2003 Norwegian Brass Band Championships
7th and 8th February 2003
Saturday 8th Feb: 09.00 - 13.35
Askøy Brass Band
Conductor: Egil Magnussen
Norwegian Ranking: 10
National Record: 2002 – 2nd 1st Division;
2001 – 6th; 2000 – 11th; 1999 – 3rd; 1998 –
n/k; 1997 – 7th; 1996 – 2nd; 1995 – 7th; 1994
Last Year: 2nd in 1st Division
Last years runners up in this section missed winning by 2 points,
so they will be very keen to try and go one better this time. Yngve
Nikolaisen directed then, but this year Egil Magnussen takes over
once more. He led the band in the previous three years.
Results have been a little up and down over the past few years
with two podium positions interspersed with a lowly 11th in 2000
and 6th in 2001. The past two years they have also done well at
the SIDDIS contest coming runners up in the 1st Division under the
Could well be up there come prize time.
Conductor: Morten E. Hansen
Norwegian Ranking: 18
National Record: 2002 – 2nd in 2nd Division;
2001 – 4th in 2nd Division; 2000 – 5th in 2nd Division;
Last Year: Runners up in 2nd Division
Promoted from the Second Division following their runners up spot
last year, Stavanger have been a band that has made an improvement
in its results on each of the last three occasions it has competed
here. 5th back in the 2nd Division in 2000 came 4th and then 2nd,
so they will be keen to keep the upward progress going.
Morten Hansen has been the key behind the success story and that
success was nearly topped last year by coming just 2 points behind
Vennesia. Morten also led the band at the SIDDIS contest where they
came 6th in 2001 and 8th last year.
Conductor: Eirik Gjerdevik
Norwegian Ranking: 14
National Record: 2002 – 4th; 2001 –
12th; 2000 – 7th;
Last Year: 4th
A slightly up and down set of results at the Championships over
the past three years for Eirik Gjerdevik’s band with last
years fine performance gaining them 4th place, whilst in 2001 they
came a lowly 12th. They will be hoping them for at least a repeat
of a twelve month ago or even a repeat of the form they have shown
at the SIDDIS contest over the past two years when they have come
3rd on both occasions.
We don’t quite know how they will do this time, but a repeat
of 2002 is not beyond them.
Conductor: Reid Gilje
Norwegian Ranking: 16
National Record: 2002 – 10th; 2001 –
8th; 2000 – 10th; 1999 – 7th;
Last Year: 10th
Reid Gilje takes the band for the second successive year and will
be hoping for a slightly better result than 2002 when they could
only manage 10th. The last few years at the Nationals have seen
the band occupy the lower midfield places in the prize list with
7th then 10th then 8th before Reid took over from Frode Rydland
to take them last year.
Reid is also the third MD to have a crack at improving results
with the band in the past couple of years with A. Torsvik and Frode
Rydland also wielding the baton since 1999. SIDDIS was a disappointment
last year when they could only come 11th under Rydland after coming
4th the year before.
We don’t think they will challenge for the top prizes this
time, but they will be looking for a good performance and a possible
top six at best.
Conductor: Gareth Pritchard
Norwegian Ranking: 21
National Record: 2002 – 9th; 2001 –
5th; 2000 – 5th; 1999 – 5th;
Last Year: 9th
Gareth Pritchard knows what it takes to win a National or two and
he directs Radoy for a second successive year. They came 9th last
year under his direction, which was a bit of a disappointment following
three years in which they had kept coming 5th.
Some interesting names have conducted the band in the past few
years as well, with Gareth joining a list that includes T. Aargaard
Nilsen who directed in 2001 and Tom Brevik who conducted the band
in 1999. Two men who have won the Nationals in the Elite Section
then plus one heck of a composer isn’t a bad CV. They didn’t
compete at SIDDIS last year but came 5th under Stian Svendsen in
They will be looking for an improvement this year, and hopefully
a placing on the rostrum, but we think it may be a top six place
Conductor: Yngve Nikolaisen
Norwegian Ranking: 17
National Record: 2002 – 5th; 2001 –
9th; 2000 – 8th; 1999 – 8th;
Last Year: 5th
A consistent record here since 1999, but one that shows that they
have never quite struck a golden vein of form to challenge for the
very top prizes. The experienced and busy Yngve Nikolaisen will
take the band this time, after Englishman Michael Fowles took the
band into 5th place (their best for a number of years) in 2002.
The last time Yngve directed the band here was 1999 when they came
8th, whilst J. Olsen took the band when they came 8th and then 9th
in 2000 and 2001.
The band had a disappointing SIDDIS contest last year when they
came 12th under Per Olav Paulsen, which was a drop of three places
from 9th in 2001.
They could do well, but we think it may be a repeat of last year
at best this time around.
Sola Brass Band
Conductor: Steve Bastable
Norwegian Ranking: 15
National Record: 2002 – 6th; 2001 –
3rd; 2000 – 1st in 2nd Division; 1999 – 9th;
Last Year: 6th
Sola have made a real coup in getting Steve Bastable to direct
their attempt to win here this year. The man who will be taking
Williams Fairey to the Regional Championships next month certainly
enjoyed himself in Norway last year when he took Stavanger to 3rd
place in the Elite Section.
Russell Gray took the band in both 2001 and 2002 when they came
3rd and 6th, whilst yet another Englishman, Melvin White directed
the band in 1999 when they came 9th. They also employed Micheal
Antrobus when they came 6th at SIDDIS last year after coming 7th
the year before.
They should be raring to go, and with a very exciting talent in
front of them they could well feature. May be not winners, but a
podium place may not be beyond them.
Conductor: Trond Elnes
Norwegian Ranking: 22
National Record: 2002 – 7th; 2001 –
2nd in 2nd Division; 2000 – Joint 5th in 2nd Division;
Last Year: 7th
A band with an improving record here over the past few years with
Trond Elnes the person behind it. They were joint 5th in the 2nd
Division in 1999 and have since followed that up with a runners
up spot in 2001 and then 7th in the First Section last year. That
has been excellent progress.
They have also shown great form at the SIDDIS contest in the past
two years as well coming 8th in 2001 and then 5th last year.
A band that we are sure will continue to improve and so a possible
top six place may be on the cards.
Conductor: John Hinckley
Norwegian Ranking: 7
National Record: 2002 – 10th in Elite Division;
2001 – 7th in Elite Division; 2000 – 6th in Elite Division;
1999 – 2nd in 1st Division;
Last Year: 10th in Elite Division
A drop from the Elite Section may well prove the starting point
for a recovery for Tertnes, and recent form at the SIDDIS contest
where they came 6th under John Hinckley may be an indication that
they could well challenge for the top prize here.
The band were promoted from the 1st Division after coming runners
up in 1999, before they came 6th and then 7th in 2000 and 2001.
Finally they came 10th and had to suffer the drop. All those performances
were directed by Michael Antrobus, but John Hinkley’s appointment
could be the start of a return to the top. They also came 8th under
his baton at the Elite level at SIDDIS in 2001.
Could be one of the bands to beat we think, so don’t be surprised
if they feature in the top three at least.
Tomra Brass Band
Conductor: Arnfinn Dalhaug
Norwegian Ranking: 13
National Record: 2002 – 3rd; 2001 –
4th; 2000 – 8th in Elite Division; 1999 – 1st in 1st
Last Year: 3rd
Arnfinn Dalhaug and his band have taken the opportunity to re group
here after being relegated from the Elite Section after coming 8th
in 2000. They had been promoted up to the top tier after winning
the First Section in 1999, so perhaps they weren’t quite prepared
The last two years though have seen two solid performances and
the results have shown that they could now be just ready to possibly
take their second title here in five years. Whether that will lead
to an extended stay in the Elite Section is impossible to say, but
they do seem to have a very solid foundation to work from.
They didn’t compete at SIDDIS last year, but were 10th in
the Elite Division in 2001. They seem to have the pedigree though
at this level and they will for us by one of the real challengers
for the top prize.
Vennesla Kristne Brass
Conductor: Bjørn Breistein
Norwegian Ranking: 19
National Record: 2002 – 1st in 2nd Division;
2001 – 10th in 1st Division; 2000 – 3rd; 1999 –
Last Year: Winners of Second Division
Last years Second Division winners will be hoping that their return
to the First Section doesn’t end in a repeat of their result
of 2001 when they came 10th and were relegated. Bjorn Breistein
led them to that promotion after coming 4th in 1999 and then 3rd
in 2000 in the First Division, so they know what it takes to make
a mark. Why they then came 10th we don’t know, but they have
bounced back straight away, and that is always a good sign.
The band have also competed at SIDDIS coming 10th in 2001 and then
7th last year under the direction of Vida Lovbrot.
Another band who have shown that they can do well at this level,
so they will be hoping for a repeat of 1999 and 2000. May be not
quite this time, but they will surely not repeat 2002.
Own Choice Selections:
Ballet for Band - Joseph Horovitz
Between the Moon and Mexico - Philip Sparke
Endeavour - Philip Sparke
English Heritage - George Lloyd
English Heritage - George Lloyd
Firestorm - Stephen Bulla
Leonardo - Philip Wilby
Paganini Variations - Philip Wilby
Paganini Variations - Philip Wilby
Tallis Variations - Philip Sparke
Variations On An Enigma - Philip Sparke
Jens T. Larsen and Aline Nistad
1. Alexander Brass Band – 97pts
2. Askøy Brass Band – 95pts
3. Tomra Brass Band – 94pts
4. Kleppe Musikklag – 93pts
5. Sagvåg Musikklag – 92pts
6. Sola Brass Band – 91pts
7. Sørum Musikklag – 90pts
8. Brøttum Musikkforening – 89pts
9. Radøy Brass – 88pts
10. Oster Brass – 87pts
11. Trondheim Politis Brassband – 86pts
2002: Alexander Brass Band
2001: Ila Brass Band
1996: Sandefjord Brass Symposium
1995: Sagvag Musikklag