Our History

The Notre Dame Bagpipe Band can trace its roots to 1949, when the Irish Guard was formed as a bagpiping unit in the Notre Dame Marching Band. While the Irish Guard impressed many people with their stature and marching ability, it was quickly discovered that the bagpipes do not behave well in the late-fall weather in South Bend. The chill air condenses moisture on the reeds, killing the sound. Additionally, the relatively small number of Guardsmen made the pipes hard to hear in the roar of Notre Dame Stadium. The piping duties of the Irish Guard were abandoned in 1954, but the ceremonial Irish Guard remained.

The pipes were down at Notre Dame until 1987 when Paul Harren '91, an avid piper, formed a band in his sophomore year. The band grew slowly, performing at a variety of small gigs and events. Successive student pipers and drummers have helped it thrive ever since. The band became an official student club and acquired pipes and drums. The band has a dual mission of performing with the pipes and teaching other students how to play them. The band provides most of the bagpipes, drums, and uniforms to its members.

When the band re-emerged after splitting with the Irish Guard, it did not have the rights to the official Notre Dame tartan, so the pipers wrapped bed sheets and blankets around their waists to make kilts. In 2000, a talented group of freshmen with previous piping experience came to Notre Dame, and by the 2001 football season, the band was marching on campus for the first time. By mid season, the band acquired gently used kilts through the generosity of the Irish Guard. The band also began to build a drum line that played traditional syncopated bagpipe beats as well as some of their own compositions.

In 2011, at the request of Coach Brian Kelly, the bagpipe band began marching the football players into the stadium during the player walk at all home football games. The pipers and drummers now wear distinctive uniforms with kilts and plaids in the official Notre Dame tartan, glengarry bonnets, and black vests or doublets (distinct from the feather bonnets and red doublets worn by the Irish Guard). You can always find the bagpipes around campus on game day. They perform four hours before game time in front of the main building (the golden dome) and numerous other times at other locations. Bagpipes are loud, so if you are trying to find the band, just listen and follow the sound.

Since 2014, the NDPB has also been accompanying the Chicago Journeymen Plumbers Local Union 130 for the annual St. Patrick's day parade in Chicago. They can be seen in the parade itself as well as piping and drumming on the boats that dye the Chicago river green.

Band Alumni

NDPB Alumni! Please help us complete this list. Send any corrections or changes to bagpipes@nd.edu

  • Brynn Alexander - -
  • Greg Angle - Tenor/ Bass - Class of 2011
  • Tom Apker - Bass - Aerospace Engineering, Class of 2003
  • Joe Arico - Piper / Pipe Major - Chemistry, Class of 2004
  • Chris Barron - - Economics and Peace Studies, Class of 2010
  • Brendan Beck - -
  • Taylor Blachley - Piper / Pipe Major - Mathematics, Class of 2010
  • Carolyn Blessing - Bass - Biochemistry, Class of 2004
  • Nick Bloom - Snare - Philosophy, Class of 2010
  • Tim Bodony - - Government & International Studies, Theology, CLass of 2001
  • Patrick Boulafentis - Piper - Class of 1999
  • James Burke - Piper - Class of 2017
  • Kevin Burke - Piper - Government & International Studies, History, Class of 1993
  • John Burns - -
  • Scott Brodfuehrer - - Computer Science, Class of 2004
  • Daniel Brown - -
  • Don Cavett - Piper - Foreign Marketing, Class of 1955
  • Aedan Cannon - Piper / Pipe Major - Accounting and Arabic, Class of 2015
  • Kevin Carothers - Piper / Pipe Major -
  • Rachael Curtin - Snare - French, Class of 2011
  • Tim Culbertson - Piper / Pipe Major - Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2005
  • Amy Curtis - Tenor - Psychology, Preprofessional Studies, Class of 2009
  • Chris Davis - - Business Administration, Class of 2013
  • Chad DeBolt - - Civil Engineering, Masters of Business Administration, Class of 2003
  • Matthew Domenech - Bass - Class of 2018
  • Patrick Donoghue - Snare - Chemistry, PhD 2008
  • Michael Donohue - Piper - Sociology, Class of 2003
  • Ryan Doyle - Piper - Science Business, Class of 2019
  • Brittney Dudley - - Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2010
  • James Elliott - Piper / Pipe Major - Chemical Engineering, Class of 2016
  • Braeden Fallet - - Class of 2016
  • Neil Flattery - - Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2014
  • Sharon Farrell - Piper - Government & International Studies, Computer Applications, Class of 2001
  • Adele Fleury - - Computer Science, Class of 2009
  • Eugene Freeman - - Information Tech. Management, Class of 2014
  • Eric Friedman - Snare - Masters of Business Administration, Class of 2009
  • Dan Gezelter - Piper / Faculty Advisor - Still at ND
  • Rebecca Glatz - Piper - Environmental Geosciences, Class of 2001
  • Dylan Goitz - Piper - Class of 2018
  • Laura Gruszka - Snare - English and Music, Honors in Creative Writing, Class of 2017
  • Andy Hagans - Piper - Management Information Systems, Class of 2005
  • Lisa Hannan - Piper - Computer Science, Class of 2000
  • Sara Hayes - Piper - Anthropology, Class of 1995
  • Joe Harmon - Piper - Marketing, Class of 2005
  • Paul Harren - Piper - Aerospace Engineering, Class of 1991
  • Nate (Philip) Hall - - History, Class of 2011
  • Sally Head - Snare - Biology, Class of 2006
  • Erin Henderson - Snare - Biology, Class of 2006
  • Joseph Hess - Tenor - Law, JD 2015
  • Kyle Higdon - - Aerospace Engineering, Class of 2011
  • Kelly Horner - -
  • Kathleen Hourican - Piper - Finance, Class of 2002
  • Robert Howland - Faculty Advisor
  • Martin Hughes - Piper - Chemistry, PhD 1997
  • Charlie Jain - - Anthropology, Preprofessional Studies, Class of 2010
  • Bill Jenista - Piper / Pipe Major - Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2006
  • Devin Johndrow - -
  • Steve Johnson - Bass / Drum Major - Class of 2011
  • Tyler Johnson - Piper / Pipe Major - Business, Class of 2018
  • Melissa Jordan - Piper - Anthropology, Class of 2013
  • Daniel Kavanaugh - -
  • John Kelley - Snare - History & Law, Class of 2011 & JD 2015
  • Michael Kelley - Piper / Pipe Major - Philosophy & Law, Class of 2007 & JD 2010
  • Dylan Klee - Piper - Class of 2016
  • Chris Knoedler - Piper - Sociology, Class of 2011
  • Patrick Koehr - - Class of 2018
  • Mike Korcynski - Piper - Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2011
  • Chris Lagos - - Architecture, Class of 2005
  • Andrew Lappin - Piper - Chemical Engineering, Class of 2004
  • Alexandre Lemaignen - Piper - Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2018
  • Zack Lemmon - Piper - Biology, Class of 2008
  • Alan Liddell - Bass -
  • Dan Lynch - Piper -
  • Gordon MacDougall - Snare / Drum Sergeant - Science Business, Class of 2015
  • J.P. MacPherson - Piper / Pipe Major - Theology & Philosophy, Class of 2012
  • James Maher - -
  • Andy Malec - Drummer/Piper - Chemistry, Class of 2001
  • John Markiewicz - Piper - Chemistry, PhD 2011
  • Keith Massey - Piper - Law, JD 2004
  • Trent Maurer - Piper - Psychology and History, Class of 1998
  • Felix Mayorga Alvarez - Bass - Class of 2019
  • Joe McCrary - Piper - Mathematics & Medieval Studies, Class of 2010
  • Dan McCabe - Piper / Pipe Major - Economics & Accountancy, Class of 2004 & MS 2005
  • Mark McLaughlin - -
  • Aiden McKiernan - - English & Medieval Studies, Class of 2010
  • Emily Medina - Snare / Drum Sergeant - Biochemistry, Class of 2018
  • Phyllis Medina - Mace - Still at ND
  • Sean Meehan - Piper - Class of 1999
  • Josh Meyer - Piper - Political Science, Class of 2008
  • Joshua Meyers - - Class of 2018
  • Alex Miller - - Early Christian Studies, MA 2010
  • Clay Miller - Tenor - Sociology & Philosophy - Class of 2003
  • Luis Molina - Piper - Finance, Class of 2003
  • Eric Monger - Piper - Art Studio, Class of 2005
  • Breda Moran - Piper - Geriatric Social Work, St. Mary's Class of
  • Derek Mullen - Piper / Pipe Major - Accountancy, Class of 1997
  • Bridget Murphy - -
  • Dan Murphy - Piper / Pipe Major - Economics & German, Class of 1998
  • Rachel Murphy - Piper - Environmental Geosciences, Class of 2008
  • Ryan Nelson - - Architecture, Class of 2012
  • Bryan Nelson - Piper - History, Greek & Roman Civilization, Class of 2007
  • Mike O'Connor - Piper - English & Education, Class of 2008, MEd 2010
  • Meghan O'Neill - Piper - Law, JD 2008
  • Thomas O'Sullivan - - Finance & Economics, Class of 2014
  • Colin Patience - Piper / Pipe Major - Architecture, Class of 2014
  • Tom Pecsok - - Finance, Class of 2011
  • Brandon Peterson - Snare - Theology, Class of 2007, PhD 2015
  • Andrew Pool - Mace / Drum Major - Aerospace Engineering, Class of 2007
  • Timothy Prol - - Psychology & Philosophy, Class of 2004
  • Dana (O'Leary) Pryor - Piper - Accountancy, Class of 1994
  • Fernando Quijano - Piper - Mechanical Engineering, Class of 2008
  • Kari Quinlan - Piper / Pipe Sergeant - Applied & Computational Mathematics & Statistics, Class of 2015
  • Graeme Quinn - - Law, JD 2015
  • Piyush Ranade - - Aerospace Engineering, Class of 2011, MS 2014
  • Jacob Ricci - Snare - Class of 2017
  • Greg Robinson - - Political Science, Class of 2010
  • Anson Rhodes - Snare - Law, JD 2005
  • Matt Russel - Snare - Physics, Class of 2010
  • Will Ryan - Piper - Computer Science, Class of 2004
  • Kaitlin Salyer - - Class of 2018
  • Treven Santicola - Piper - Program of Liberal Studies, Class of 1993
  • Joe Scolaro - - Biology & Philosophy - Class of 2010
  • Mike Schultz - Piper - Film, Television, & Theatre, Class of 2004
  • Maria Sheehan - Snare
  • Ryan Slaney - Piper - Chinese & Aerospace Engineering - Class of 2011
  • Joe Smith - Piper / Pipe Major- Aerospace Engineering, Class of 2001
  • Jeff Stein - Piper - Biology, Class of 2004
  • Will Streit - Snare - Economics & Psychology, Class of 2013
  • Daniel Suma - Piper - Chemical Engineering, Class of 2016
  • Justin Sparazynski - Tenor / Snare - Education, Class of 2005
  • Danielle Taylor - Tenor - History, Class of 2006
  • Sal Thomas - Piper - American Studies, Class of 2008
  • Ron Thompson - Bass - MBA, Class of 2006
  • Redmond Tuttle - Piper - Program of Liberal Studies, Class of 2020
  • Jasper Twigg - Piper -
  • Dominic Vachon - Piper / Faculty Advisor - Psychology & Theology, 1980, MDiv 1985, still at ND
  • Pat Virtue - Piper - Computer Science, Class of 2002
  • Joe Volini - Piper / Pipe Major - Government & International Studies, Class of 2000
  • Allegra Wallingford - Snare - Class of 2018
  • Mackenzie Warren - - Physics, MS 2014
  • David Wartko - Bass / Snare - Mathematics, Class of 2009
  • Brian Zampell - Snare - Civil Engineering, Class of 2004, MBA 2006
  • Megan Wienandy - -