Erin Ritchie

Erin with her school band in Germany

Erin started to show an interest in music when she was 3 years old.  That was when she received her first guitar and that interest in music stayed with her throughout her primary schooling. Erin tried many instruments whilst there including Drum Kit, Ukulele, Whistles, Piano and Bass Guitar but at the age of 9yrs she was introduced to the Bagpipe and fell in love with the instrument and it’s music.

 Her tutor, Lee Moore, initially taught her at school but he quickly recognised her talent and offered to teach her privately. Erin jumped at the opportunity and has never looked back. Her piping reached new levels and at the age of 12yrs she ventured into the world of competition. From that nervous 12yr old she is now a recognised force on the competition circuit. Regularly winning in the Ceol Beag (light music) section Erin branched into Ceol Mhor (heavy music aka piobaireachd) where she has continued her winning habits.

Erin plays with two pipe bands: Cockenzie and Port Seton Royal British Legion where she was appointed Junior Pipe Major at the young age of 14 yrs, and her school band Preston Lodge High School Pipe Band where she is Pipe Major.

As Pipe Major, Erin realised that being the best piper is not enough, what she needed to be was a good Role Model for her juniors. This she excelled at. Then came the realisation that as a teacher she was not only teaching music but giving children a vehicle that they could use to express themselves and thus fulfil their full potential. 

Some teachers spend a lifetime teaching and never learn these essentials; Erin learned all this by herself! That fact in itself speaks volumes of her love and understanding music as well as explaining why she is regarded as an excellent teacher. Her relaxed and confident style puts kids at ease and brings them with her on a journey into the wonderful world of music.

Erin has competed all over the world but she has also played on the streets of New York, appeared at a tattoo in Germany, and honoured the fallen of two World Wars by playing at remembrance events in Belgium and France. Recently Erin was chosen to travel to China in September 2017 and perform for high ranking official. As the regular solo piper for The Royal British Legion Scotland she is also frequently called upon to represent them.

Erin has also piped for a number of famous people from Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip to Nicola Sturgeon to the celebrities on the X Factor Tour and of course Susan Boyle.

Some people say that Erin is a “natural” piper but there is no such thing as a “natural” musician! All musicians must practise. Hours of practise are needed to perfect technique on any instrument and the bagpipe is recognised as one of the most technically difficult instruments in the world.  Erin is the living proof that diligent practice brings rewards, not only the travel and glory but the inner growth that has made her the person she is.

Scottish Piper welcomes her aboard and hopes she will have a long and happy experience with the school.

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