Southern California Tionól
October 23,24,25

The 2020 Southern California Tionól will take place on Saturday & Sunday October 23, 24 & 25, 2020.

Our guests this year will be Gay McKeon & Kara Doyle with a special presentation by Barry O'Neill on Piper Sunday about A Societal History of the Irish Pipes.



Use the drop down menu below to pay for individual classes or pay for a reduced price for the entire weekend. We are doing this on an honor system. The links to the classes are below. Make your payment ahead of time so we are prepared and connect to the zoom link when the time is right.

Kara Doyle is also available to give individual private classes. Speak with her directly to schedule yours at karadoyle1969@gmail.com

Follow these 3 EASY STEPS to take part...

Step 1: Decide what you want to participate in...


(All times are in Pacific Daylight Time)

Friday, Oct 23

7:00pm - 10:00pm: Online Zoom Meet & Greet. Come join us in an online social hooley! Drop in, say hi, bring a glass of something good.

Saturday, Oct 24

10:00am - 11:30pm: Gay McKeon - teaches a tune.

12:00am - 1:30pm: Social Time. Online Zoom Meet & Greet. Come join us in an online social hooley! Drop in, say hi, bring a glass of something good.

2:00pm - 3:30pm: Kara Doyle - Presentation on Tommy Reck. Kara will also be giving private lessons. Contact her directly to schedule your time slot at karadoyle1969@gmail.com

7:00pm - 10:00pm: Pipers Chair & Social Time - submit your 3 minute video ASAP to pat@socalpipers.com

Sunday, Oct 25

11:00am - 12:30pm: A presentation by Barry O'Neill A Societal History of the Irish Pipes ::: Details

12:30pm - 2:00pm: Social time. Online Zoom Meet & Greet. Come join us in an online social hooley! Drop in for the long Irish good-bye, you'll know the scoop by this stage!

Step 2: Make your payment...


Step 3: Click the zoom link at the appropriate time...

Click this Zoom link to join the class a few minutes ahead of the desired time, listed above.


Guest Bios

Gay McKeon

Gay McKeon took an interest in uilleann piping in the 1960s under the tutelage of Leo Rowsome at the Piper's Club on Thomas Street in Dublin's city centre.

Since the mid 1970's Gay has toured and recorded extensively including contributions to piping compilation albums The Piper's Rock, and The Ace and Deuce of Piping Vol. 2, He has published two solo albums to date, Irish Piping Tradition in 1997 and The Turning of the Geese in 2019, and a trio CD The Dusty Miller with his sons Conor and Seán in 2005. Whilst living in London in the mid 1970s Gay recorded Music from West Clare and Galway with Bobby Casey, Raymond Roland, John Roe, and Liam Farrell. Gay played on the Silly Sisters album with Maddy Prior and June Tabor and later with Christy Moore on the Iron Behind the Velvet.

He has taught piping for over 45 years at the Pipers Club in Thomas Street and Na Píobairí Uilleann and has established piping classes at locations throughout Ireland. In addition to teaching at schools and festivals in Ireland and internationally. Gay has performed on three volumes of the acclaimed tutor series The Art of Ullmann Piping. He has also devised, produced and directed publications including The Pipers Choice and Traveller Piper DVD series and numerous CD recordings including three volumes of recordings of young emerging pipers. Gay has spearheaded many educational projects including the establishment of the NPU PipeCraft pipemaking training centre, the filming of leading uilleann pipemakers, forging partnerships with Music Generation, Childvision and many other organisations to establish outreach tuition programmes. Gay worked with Joe Doyle to ensure that two volumes of Music for the Irish Pipes and Pipers Choice Music Collection were published.

As CEO of Na Píobairí Uilleann Gay has worked to achieve a major expansion of the NPU Pipes on Loan and scholarship schemes, the funding of and restoration of 15 Henrietta Street and securing UNESCO recognition for uilleann piping. He established a regular series of performances and lectures including Session with the Pipers, Notes and Narratives, Ceol sa Chlub and International Uilleann Piping Day He has produced traditional music concerts including Piperlink the annual Ace and Deuce of Piping and the Sound of Ireland concerts. Gay has ensured that many of the NPU public performances are filmed and made available on the extensive NPU online Archive.

Prior to becoming CEO of NPU, on a voluntary basis, over a thirty year period from 1986 Gay served as a board member and as an officer in roles including Secretary, Treasurer and Chairman of the organisation. Gay's two sons Conor and Seán are also uilleann pipers and were recipients of TG4 Ceoltóir Óg na Bliana awards in 2001 and 2005 respectively.

Gay will be catching us up on what is happening at NPU, and also his approach to playing flat pitch vs. concert pitch pipes.

Kara Doyle

Kara was born in Wisconsin, and spent her youth in California. Moving to the Northeast for graduate school brought her into regular contact with traditional Irish music, and she began to play whistle in 1995. She contracted a severe case of uilleann piping fever in the late nineties, and began piping in 2001. Kara's piping has been strongly influenced in tone, repertoire, and pedagogy by the teaching of Benedict Koehler and Brian McNamara. She admires both the tightness of Tommy Reck and the lyrical musicality of Liam O'Flynn and Mick O'Brien.

As a member of two area groups, The Broken String Band and Curragh, Kara has performed over the last fifteen years at music venues all over New York's Capital District, including Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs, the Washington Tavern in Albany, José Malone's and the Ale House in Troy, Petersburgh Memorial Hall in Petersburgh, NY, the Altamont Fair in Altamont, NY, The Depot in Cambridge, NY, and most recently the Marble Rock House in Leeds, NY. In spring 2019, Curragh expanded their range from area to regional with a series of St. Patrick's Day concerts aboard the Northern Lights in Boston.

As her interest in piping grew, Kara became involved with the organization of the east coast's largest annual gathering of uilleann pipers, the Northeast Tionól; she now serves on its board. She has also recently branched out into solo performance, with her debut solo concert at the Boston Uilleann Pipers' Club concert series in April 2019.

Kara offers private uilleann piping lessons in person or online. She has given piping demonstrations and workshops at the Saratoga Dance Flurry, the Lower Hudson Valley Pipers' Club, the Northeast Tionól, the Southeast Tionól, and the West Coast Tionól. She has also taught private tin whistle lessons, and beginning tin whistle classes at Old Songs in Voorheesville, NY.

Kara will be discussing the piping of Tommy Reck. Kara will also be available for private lessons at times that don't conflict with the other seminars.

ZOOM Recommendations for Guests & Attendees:

  1. Check for Zoom update.
  2. A hour or more before the event, restart your wifi and computer.
  3. If you are using a wireless mouse and keyboard check the battery level ahead of time.
  4. Test speakers and microphone in Zoom.
    Guest Settings:

    Desktop & Laptop
    • Go to Zoom Preferences
    • Audio settings
    • "Suppress Background Noise" LOW
    • Audio/Advanced settings
    • Turn ON "Show in-meeting option to "Enable Original Sound" from microphone. (On some laptops an echo can be heard. If you experience this either, use headphones or, turn OFF when speaking and ON when playing.)
    • Turn ON "High Fidelity Music Mode"

    Phone or iPad App
    • Open App
    • Before joining meeting go to...
    • Click on Zoom settings cog in top left of the screen
    • Select Meeting
    • Turn ON "Use Original Sound"

  6. Attendees are muted by default. To speak, press and hold the spacebar to be heard. Or press the microphone button in the bottom left corner of your phone or computer screen, and ask your question. Remember to re-mute please, to help avoid unwanted noise.
  7. If you want to be seen in your best light, set yourself up facing a window or have a decent light source you can point at yourself.
  8. Use "Gallery View" to see everyone in the meeting. Use "Speaker View" to see who is talking at the moment. To only see the guest "Pin" their screen so theirs is the larger screen and others align above or to the side.
  9. Attendees, turn off your camera if you don't want to be included in the recorded video.
  10. I think that's everything. If there's something I missed please let me know.


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