I just submitted my entry for my first solo piping competition. As a second year piper I am still in the lowest grade which in North America is 5. Last season I did not take part in any solo competitions as I was too busy learning so many of the other tunes you are expected to be able to play as part of the Grade 5 band. In eastern Ontario the first event of the piping season is the Ottawa Branch Indoor Highland Games. It really is more of a piping competition than a Highland Games but that's just semantics. The solo competitions take place in the morning and the band portions take place in the afternoon. The event takes place on May 9th so there is still plenty of time to iron out my solo performance piece. The requirement for grade 5 solos is a 2-parted March with any time signature. Mine is a 3/4 March called Lochanside which I feel I know quite well. The judging at this particular event is unique because you perform in front of the judge and the judge alone. There are no spectators to make you extra nervous. That's good for my first solo attempt. Our band performance in the afternoon will also be our first of the season. We have been working on our March Medley since late October. Hopefully it comes together in time for this first event of the season. Here is a photo from last year.