50 years ago, Fench Gauraves made her first Scottish bagpipes, as an autodidact, in her in-laws’ basement in Lorient. Today, their equipment comes directly from the workshops of Scottish manufacturer McCallum Bagpipes, one of the largest bagpipe makers in the world.
The knowledge of Lorient handed down to the Scots
A giant leap from local to international was made thanks to Ti ar Sonerien. Specialized in the sale of Scottish bagpipes since 1997, Concarnois Store is also the exclusive reseller of the famous Scottish brand in France. Beyond business, the bell-ringers in the house had a genius idea: to continue making the violins of Lorient Bell Ringer by handing over his knowledge to the Scots.
The first “Pride” was delivered by the factory in April. A prototype tested and approved by Hervé Le Floch (the benchmark bagpipe ringer in Brittany). Fans of the visual and sound aesthetics of the bagpipes from Lorient, “beautiful as his turtle, his second obsession”. The interested party is satisfied with the result. Grateful too. “That’s exactly what it sounds like. You have to share and not keep all this work to yourself.”
To Kehne Ko Toh, his career as a lute started with the story of theft! “In 1968, my Henderson bagpipe I had bought two years earlier was stolen. I tried in vain to find similar sensations on other bagpipes, before turning on my own device in 1972.
A generation of ringers trained and equipped by Gourvès
Two years later, an employee at Plastimo, adopted Lorient, registered with the Chamber of Trades, as a part-time pipe manufacturer. This native of Plogstel says that over the years, most of Lorient’s bugged ringers have started playing on their own self-made drones, “with a bagpipe stand with a really special sound”, that sounds like a bell ringing. Train and equip an entire generation of people.
But now, the famous luthier is not eternal. And today, it is her “nails”, recognized everywhere in Brittany, going down the lineage. a great first. Imagine that the Kilmarnock factory produces in a week what took Fench 50 years to make: about fifty bagpipes. “But, warns Yann Pelliot, responsible for Ti ar Sonerien, this will not be mass production. Until after-sales service, each tool will be carefully checked”.
Concert on October 17 in Tregunka
The Concarnois store has already created a good stock of 22 bagpipes to launch this range. Five bagpipes have already been sold. This was expected: Fench Gauraves, 76, hasn’t been touring for five years.
To mark the occasion, Ti ar Sonerien is holding a concert of Scottish bagpipe soloists, on Sunday, October 17th, at 3 pm, at the Salle Le Sterenn in Trégunc. On stage: Guillaume Le Bourque, Hervé Le Floc, Alexis Meunier and Pierre Thébault, five famous ringers who will all play on a new and old generation of Gauraves violinmakers.
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