Pibroch, piobaireachd or ceòl mòr is an art music genre associated primarily with the Scottish Highlands that is characterised by extended compositions with a melodic theme and elaborate formal variations. Strictly meaning ‘piping’ in Scottish Gaelic, piobaireachd has for some four centuries been music of the great Highland bagpipe.A more general term is Scottish Gaelic: ceòl mòr (in reformed spelling, or ceòl mór in old spelling), meaning the ‘great music’ (to distinguish this complex extended art-music from the more popular Scottish music such as dances, reels, marches, and strathspeys, which are called ceòl beag or ‘little music’). This term encompasses music of a similar nature to pibroch, pre-dating the adoption of the Highland pipes, that has historically been played on the wire-strung Gaelic harp (clàrsach) and later on the Scottish fiddle, and this form is undergoing a revival.

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