Friday, 24 February 2017

Meet The Supplier - Alba Bagpipes

This week we had a chat with Rikki from Alba Bagpipes, Rikki also established The Little Wedding Book
 What's your business called and who makes up your business, introduce us to the people in your business?

Piper Barry Evans – Proprietor (Owner)
Piper Rikki Evans – Co-owner
We have 4 other professional pipers we use however have at our disposal approximately 20 professional pipers to call on.

Tell us about your business, what services do you provide for weddings, are these available for other events or occassions?

Alba Bagpipes was established in 2010 and has very quickly become one of the leading piper hire companies in the North East of Scotland.
All of our pipers have at least 15 years piping experience and pipe with some of the top pipe bands in the North East of Scotland which include, Portlethen & District, Grampian Police Scotland and Buchan Peterson.
We offer 2 wedding packages which both include the piper using small pipes which are perfect for piping the bride down the aisle and playing during the signing of the register.
Our packages are - Full Scottish (Full Day) & Wee Dram (Half Day)
Key stages where our pipers perform include;
Pipe for 30 minutes to greet your guests (Full/Half Day)
Pipe to welcome the Bride (Full/Half Day)
Pipe the Bride down the aisle (if required) – smaller quieter pipes can be used for this (Full/Half Day)
Pipe during the signing of the register if required again with the smaller pipes (Full/Half Day)
Pipe couple back up the aisle & play for 15 minutes at the conclusion of the ceremony (Full/Half Day)
Pipe to greet the guests on arrival to the reception venue (Full Day)
Pipe to greet the Bride and Groom on arrival to the reception venue (Full Day)
Pipe the Bridal party into dinner (Full Day)
Pipe the Bride and Groom into dinner (Full Day)

What's your favourite part of the job? Is there a part that you really look forward to or enjoy?

We enjoy speaking to couples before their big say with discussing all the details of their day and where the piper fits in.  We love seeing the couples day unfold after discussing so much with them prior to the day.  Piping outside some stunning venues is also a favourite because Scotland really does have some amazing venues with lovely views.

What sets you apart from your competitors? Why should prospective clients choose you over your competitors?

Alba Bagpipes promises and delivers nothing but professional pipers with nothing less than 15 years piping experience.  Unlike some other piper hire companies our players all play or have played in the top pipe band grades in the world and compete against the best pipe bands in the world..  We are professional from the initial contact through to the final contact.  We also offer the small pipes for indoor playing such as walking down the aisle & signing the register at no extra cost.

Do you have an unusual, interesting or funny story about your business/previous clients?

Piper Rikki says – “I do remember piping outside the Old Mill Inn when I was approached by the photographer advising there is going to be a delay.  The best man had left the rings at home in Aberdeen.  He finally made it back 45 minutes after the ceremony was due to start.  I thought this type of thing only happened in the movies!”

Have you won any awards or accolades? what for and when? Do you have a claim to fame? Have you worked for a celeb?

Our biggest achievement which we like to shout about is my Guinness World Record title.  The actual title is - 'The Longest Marathon Playing Bagpipes' and was achieved in August 2015. I was able to fundraise £7500 for 5 different charities.  Total record time is 26 Hours, 5 Minutes 2 Seconds.

I was also the piper for a BBC drama series called Stonemouth.  This aired on BBC 2 in March 2015.  I was featured piping outside the MacDuff Parish Church for a funeral.

Do you have a top tip(s) for couples getting married in the North East of Scotland? Is there something couples often forget?

Best tip I can give couples is book your piper at the earliest opportunity.  We will never overbook ourselves and we often run out of availability when couples try booking us last minute.  One reason we don't overbook is because we feel you lose that personal touch with our clients if we have too much weddings for 1 day