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About the Pipe Band

Marching up to the line
The grade 3 band at Pleasanton 2023

By any standard, the Macalester College Pipe Band is the premier pipe and drum organization in the upper Midwest. We currently have competition bands in grade 3 and grade 5. Under the direction of Pipe Major Mike Breidenbach and Drum Sergeant Hunter Gullickson, the grade 3 band gained recognition as the best overall band in their grade by winning Champion Supreme in the Midwest Pipe Band Association for 3 of the last 5 years.

From concerts to competitions to parades and celebrations, the Macalester College Pipe Band prides itself on putting on a high quality, entertaining performance that will spark your Celtic spirit and leave you wanting more. The band partners with highland dancers and other special guests to bring you the best in traditional and contemporary Celtic music and dance.

The Macalester College Pipe Band is comprised of students, faculty, alumni, and community members, who are all dedicated to playing the bagpipes and drums at the highest level. There are currently 25 pipers and 16 drummers in the competition bands, and an additional 25 students and members in the organization.

The Macalester College Pipe Band has been entertaining audiences in the Twin Cities for almost 60 years. In addition to their own concert schedule, they are often invited to perform with other groups such as Macalester’s own African Music Ensemble, and to open for international performers such as Rod Stewart and The Black Watch, one of the foremost pipe bands in the world. We also perform for the MN Roller Girls, the The Special Olympics Polar Plunge, and have performed with the Chieftains on multiple occasions.

The band’s strong and continuous presence at Macalester College has made it an institution in its own right. The band has been called on to play for such dignitaries as Former Secretary General of the U.N. and Mac Alumni Kofi Annan, Former President Jimmy Carter, Former VP and Mac Alum Walter Mondale, Madeleine Albright, and others.

The Pipe Band is available for hire for all occasions. We can provide a solo bagpiper or drummer, a small group, or the whole pipe band. We are professionals when it comes to providing you with the complete piping and drumming experience.

The Macalester College Pipe Band provides instruction for anyone interested in learning to play the music or join the band.