GaitaMaker | Bagpipes

Researching, Designing & Producing solutions for Bagpipes around the world

About GaitaMaker

We are interested in solving common issues that the piper usually faces when interpreting bagpipes.

At GaitaMaker we are devoted to the research of seamless design innovations. These solutions should be as universal as possible, adaptable to most bagpipes in the world.

Our project fosters the involvement of other professionals, institutions and business to produce affordable high-quality musical instruments and accessories.


at GaitaMaker



Creating seemless, innovative, and affordable design solution

GaitaMaker Mission

Researching, Designing & Making Bagpipes and accessories

  • Solve universal problems of world bagpipes
  • Develop seamless design solutions for existing traditional bagpipes
  • Produce affordable high-quality musical instruments
  • Answer the playing needs of the professional touring musician and the student piper
  • Support scientific research on innovative designs, materials and productions techniques
  • Promote the development of piping teaching methods and initiatives


The Maker Gonçalo and bagpipes contruction - construção de gaita de foles

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The Designers

Zexuan and Gonçalo are the designers behind the GaitaMaker products.
They are musicians and instrument builders. 
They identify the problems and design the solutions.

Gonçalo Cruz 

was born in Porto, Portugal.
He is a Musician, Researcher & Maker of Bagpipes & Woodwinds. 

He holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Architecture from Porto, and is currently a Doctor of Music candidate at the Sibelius Academy, Helsinki – “Forgotten Bagpipes – The redesign of the Säkkipilli in Finland”. 

Gonçalo has been involved in the revival of local bagpipes in Portugal by researching, playing, teaching and building bagpipes and maintaining a professional bagpipe-making workshop that he has now moved to Helsinki.

He has worked as a music composer and guest musician on live and recorded performances, interpreting an array of European bagpipes, flutes and whistles. Although his bagpipes & flutes ground him in the folk music universe, his original compositions are meant as storytelling, always evocative of images, clearly influenced by cinema soundtracks.

In order to understand the origins of bagpipes, Gonçalo frequently collaborates with early music ensembles and medieval re-enactments in Iberia – Attempting to play the documented music of the period on bagpipes, creates challenging obstacles, that once overcome shed light on history.

Since 1997 Gonçalo has pursued the dream of truly understanding the fabulous world of bagpipes. More than two decades have gone by and Gonçalo Cruz, as a musician, maker of bagpipes, and tutor of young musicians, is undoubtedly one of the most influential pipers of the new Portuguese folk scene.

Zexuan Qiao

was born in Shanghai , China.
He is a guitarist, flautist and piper, music Researcher & instrument Maker.

He holds a Bachelor’s in interaction design from Glasgow and a Master’s degree in Design for Performance from London. After being a musical instrument conservation intern at the music instrument museum St. Cecilia’s Hall, in Edinburgh, he is now a Doctor of Music candidate at the Queen’s University of Belfast – “Reconstructing Border Pipes: An interdisciplinary study”.

He has worked as a touring musician, on both guitar and bass for several Rock bands across China. Zexuan also recorded for electro-acoustic composers and collaborated with theatre performances on the Chinese flute “Dizi”.

His increasing passion for European historical flutes and bagpipes led him to perform traversos and small-pipes for folk dancing.

He recorded small-pipes for the research project “The musical culture of coffee houses and taverns in eighteenth‐century Edinburgh” which resulted in a recreation of the sound environment of the Cross Keys tavern.










Our research, design & product development
works out of Helsinki – FINLAND and Belfast – UK
Our team members travel frequently across Europe on fieldwork and research
So if you wish to visit us or set an appointment, please contact us well in advance.

E-mail: i n f o @ G a i t a M a k e r . c o m

Karvaamokuja 4, 2.6
00350 Helsinki

GAITAMAKER (United Kingdom)
Cloreen Park,
BT9 5HN Belfast

For more information please send us an email.