2005 Brass in Concert Championship - Runners and Riders

14-Nov-2005

4BR looks at the 11 bands that will be trying to take home with them the most prestigious entertainment title in the business.


Bayv BandBuy As You View Band
www.buyasyouviewcoryband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 2
Conductor: Dr Robert Childs

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Ian Williams
Euphonium: David Childs
Trombone: Chris Thomas
Soprano: Michelle Ibbotson
Horn: Owen Farr
Flugel: Joanne Deane
Baritone: Susan Thomas
Eb Tuba: Gavin Saynor
Percussion: David Danford

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances:
6th time
Debut: 1979
Best Result: 2nd: 1979
Worst Result: 12th: 2000, 1996, 1977
 
Last 7 Years:
2004:  DNC
2003:  DNC
2002:  DNC
2001:  DNC
2000:  DNC
1999:  DNC
1998:  4th (Jeremy Wise) (4)

Also: 1979: 2nd (Denzil Stephens); 1980: 3rd (Denzil Stephens); 1981: 5th (Denzil Stephens); 1997: 10th (Jeremy Wise)

Bob ChildsBAYV make what is only their 6th appearance at Brass in Concert and its first since 1998 when under Jeremy Wise they were placed 4th.  That was the pre Robert Childs era though and it is something of a coup for the organisers to get the band back here after a long period away.

Not a bad record here over the years what with a second place back in 1979, but they have also tasted the disappointment of coming in the also rans too with 10th place in 1997, so they won't be taking anything for granted.

They've got the opportunity to set the standard this time around having been drawn number one, but you can guarantee they'll come out with all guns blazing and will have plenty still in the tank after their appearance in the Gala Concert the previous evening.

Like a number of others here, they've a reputation for entertaining with an amazing array of talent around the stands that if it comes to the fore, could quite easily take the breath away.  Sit back and listen to Ian Williams, Michelle Ibbotson, David Childs, Owen Farr, Joanne Deane, Chris Thomas – a phenomenal team of soloists of which one is bound to be featured with the aim of taking the soloist prize.

Whatever you do, make sure you're in the hall for 9.30 to listen to BAYV for it could be a performance that will be hard to beat.

Player to listen out for:
Owen Farr – one of the finest horn players in the business, who has enhanced his reputation as a cracking soloist since joining BAYV in 2004.


Sellers INternationalSellers International
www.sellersinternationalband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 11
Conductor: Phillip McCann

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Eliott Darwin
Principal Euphonium: Mark Bousie
Soprano Cornet: Denise Dranfield
Solo Trombone: Rebecca Lundberg
Solo horn: Leah Williams
Flugel horn: Sian Carradus
Solo Baritone: Tim Smith
Eb Bass: Ben Thomson
Percussion: Louise Emms
 
Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances: 13th time
Debut: 1991
Best Result: 2nd: 2003, 2004
Worst Result: 9th: 1996 

Last 7 Years:
2004: 2nd (Phillip McCann) (5)
2003: 2nd (Philip McCann) (8)
2002: 4th (Phillip McCann) (3)
2001: 3rd (Phillip McCann) (8)
2000: 6th (Alan Exley) (7)
1999: 5th (Alan Exley) (7)
1998: 8th (David Hirst) (10)

Also: 1991: 9th (Phillip McCann); 1992: 3rd (Phillip McCann); 1993: 5th (Phillip McCann); 1996: 9th (Alan Morrison):  1997: 7th (Alan Morrison)

2004 Programme:
Jubilee, Paul Drury
The Children of Sanchez, Natalie Atwell (Flugel), Chuck Mangione arr Reid Gilje
When the Saints go Marching In, John Rutter, arr Stephen Bradman
Mexican Hat Dance, Bernard Ebbinghouse - Percussion Feature
Benedictus, Karl Jenkins - The Armed Man as A Mass For Peace, arr Stephen Bradman
Overture Peterloo, Sir Malcolm Arnold, arr Andrew Duncan

2003 Programme:
Marching to Glory - Stephen Bulla
Scarlet Ribbons - Evelyn Danzog & Jack Segal, arr Andrew Duncan
Flugel: Natalie Beer
The Waltonian - JJ Richards
American Trilogy - arr Goff Richards
Ole South (a pantation patrol)- JS Zamecnik & George Hamilton arr Stephen Bradman
Images for Brass (mvts 3 & 4) - Stephen Bulla

Phlip McCannThe past couple of years here have seen Sellers only denied by Grimethorpe when it comes to taking the major prize, and both occasions they have been well worth their placing. Last years runners up were excellent value with an expertly chosen programme from Phillip McCann that was just the right mix of cracking playing and top notch visual entertainment, bringing them prizes for the Best March (something they did in 2003 as well), Entertainment and Percussion Section.

Over the years they have also won plenty of other prizes too, and it is the combination of the band and their founder that seems to click best here – some of the other link ups have not been so successful.

Sellers can master any number of playing styles and whilst they've had a few personnel changes since last year, this event is becoming a happy hunting ground for them; whether that success will continue off the number two draw remains to be seen.

Player to listen out for:
Leah Williams – a tenor horn player who is destined for great things – arguably the horn player of the day at The Open in September


Reg Vardy logoReg Vardy
www.regvardyband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 12
Conductor: Ray Farr

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Brian Tait
Euphonium: Paul Robinson
Trombone: Chris Bentham
Soprano: Tom Glendinning
Horn: Andrew Hall
Flugel: Joanne Winspear
Baritone: Jim Thompson
Eb Tuba: Steve Malcolm
Percussion: Sarah Burn

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances: 29th time
Debut: 1977
Best Result: 3rd: 2003
Worst Result: 12th: 1992

Last 7 Years:
2004:  4th (Ray Farr) (9)
2003:  3rd (Ray Farr) (6)
2002:  8th (Ray Farr) (4)
2001:  10th (Stephen Roberts) (5)
2000:  7th  (Stephen Roberts) (9)
1999:  11th (Robert Childs) (4)
1998:  7th (Bryan Hurdley) (1)

Also: 1977: 4th (Walter Hargreaves); 1978: 5th (Eric Banks)' 1979: 9th (Trevor Walmsley); 1980: 8th (Trevor Walmsley); 1981: =7th (Arthur Kenney); 1982: 10th (Peter Parkes); 1983: 5th (Peter Parkes); 1984: 6th (Peter Parkes); 1985: 8th (Roger Payne); 1986: 7th (Roger Payne); 1987: 7th (Peter Parkes); 1988: 9th (Stuart Stirling); 1989: 9th (Roger Payne); 1990: 9th (Denzil Stephens); 1991: 9th (Stuart Stirling); 1992: 12th (Hugh Megarrell); 1993: 11th (John Roberts); 1994: 7th (Mark Bentham); 1995: 7th (Mark Bentham); 1996: 10th (John Roberts); 1997: 11th (Brian Grant)

2004 Programme:
Agincourt Song, Trad arr Elgar Howarth & Ray Farr
Comedians Galop, Dimitri Kabalevsky, arr Howard Snell
Mr Jums, Chris Hazel, arr Alan Catherall featuring Flugels Joanne Winspear & Nicola Williamson
Euphony, Paul Robinson (Euphonium), Robert Redhead
Mexican Hat Dance, Featuring Cornets Bryan Tait, Bert Lovell and Les Palmer arr Ray Farr
Roman Festivals, Ottorino Respighi, arr Ray Farr

2003 Programme:
Saber Dance - Khatchaturian
Over The Rainbow Flugel: - Joanne Winspear
Short Ride in a Fast Machine
Jeg Elske Deg Euphonium: - Paul Robinson
Post Horn Pandemonium - arr Ray Farr
Finale from Enigma Variations - Elgar, arr Ball.

Ray FarrReg Vardy will be relishing this one for sure. After a busy year at the major contests they will surely be looking to round 2005 in style and go three places better than a twelve month ago and take the top prize here for the first time in their history and at their 29th attempt.  Drawn third this year, they'll be hoping to make an impression that stays with the judges all day – something they haven't done on every occasion since 1977.

They have had some great names conduct the band here such as Walter Hargreaves, Trevor Walmsley and Peter Parkes, but who can remember Stuart Stirling? In a strange twist Hepworth's Mark Bentham directed them too as a young man too.

They have been here every year since the event started, but in 2003 they came closest yet to winning and that kick started their great run of great form. Ray Farr has tasted success here before (five times in fact) and we think he may be planning something special from his box of brilliant arrangements to try and make it a sixth win. If it comes off, then they could well bring the house down. 29th time lucky then?

Player to listen out for:
Alan Catherall – the band's second cornet but renowned for his arrangements – now we've mentioned it, its more than possible that they band won't feature one, but there's a good chance, other bands will


Whitburn logoWhitburn
www.whitburnband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 10
Conductor: Andy Duncan

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Eleanor Ferguson
Euphonium: Evelyn Bradley
Trombone: Mark Boyd
Soprano: Scott Forrest
Horn: Ian Fleming
Flugel: James Chamberlain
Baritone: Anne Crookston
Eb Tuba: Graham Fraser
Percussion: Richard Dyson

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances:
12th time
Debut: 1977
Best Result: 3rd: 2004
Worst Result: 12th: 2000, 1996, 1977

Last 7 Years:
2004:  3rd (Andrew Duncan) (10)
2003:  DNC
2002:  DNC
2001:  DNC
2000:  12th (Phillip McCann) (6)
1999:  4th (Phillip McCann) (2)
1998:  DNC

Also: 1977: 12th (Allan Street); 1980: 9th (Peter Parkes); 1981: 10th (Peter Parkes); 1982: 9th (Peter Parkes); 1985: 7th (Geoffrey Whitham); 1986: 10th (Denzil Stephens); 1987: 10th (Anthony Swainson); 1996: 12th (Richard Adams)

2004 Programme:
Entry of the Gladiators, Julius Fucik
The Swan, Katrina Marzella (Baritone), Saints-Saens, arr Howard Snell
Scherzo, Shostakovich, arr Andrew Duncan
I've Got You Under My Skin, Jim Chamberlain (Flugel), Cole Porter, arr Mark Freeh
The Bass Boys, Bass Section Feature, Brian Wilson, arr Andrew Duncan
Lullaby for James, Andrew Duncan (First Performance)
A Witches' Sabbath, Andrew Duncan (First Performance)

Andy DuncanWhitburn return to The Sage Gateshead having appeared at this event last year for the first time since 2000. Over the years it hasn't been the best of hunting grounds for the Scots, what with three 12th places, three 10th places and couple of 9th places in the ten attempts they have made since making their debut at the inaugural contest in 1977. On their day they have a rare mix of talent in front and behind the music stands which is as good as anyone around, and if it clicks they could well push for top honours. 

Last year that talent was well mixed and they equaled their best ever showing at this event coming in third place with a cracking programme that had Andy Duncan's imagination and authority stamped all over it.
You can guarantee that Andy's thoughts will influence their programme this time as well. 

Last year, the basses were featured as ‘Bass Boys' in an arrangement of music by the Beach Boys – we wonder which section will dress up this year? Eleanor Ferguson, Jim Chamberlain, Mark Boyd and Evelyn Bradley and other real quality players could be in line this time round, and each of them has the ability to shine.

Player to listen out for:
The Fraser brothers in the bass section, Robert and Graham.  The might not be prominent at the front of the band, but between them bring plenty of quality to Whitburn's overall performance.


Scottish Co-opScottish Co-op
www.scottishco-opband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 8
Conductor: Allan Ramsay

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Jim Heyes
Euphonium: Alison Bonnar
Trombone: Paul Kiernan
Soprano: Mark Ruddock
Horn: Lyndsay Smith
Flugel: Andrea Casey
Baritone: Kirsten Lyndsey
Eb Tuba: Jonathan Gawn
Percussion: Derek Love

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances: 14th time
Debut: 1979
Best Result: 3rd: 1993, 1989
Worst Result: 12th: 1979
 
Last 7 Years:
2004:  DNC
2003:  7th  (Nicholas Childs) (4)
2002:  DNC
2001:  DNC
2000:  DNC
1999:  DNC
1998:  5th (Bryan Allen) (11)

Also: 1979: 12th (Nigel Boddice); 1988: 6th (Geoffrey Whitham); 1989: 3rd (Howard Snell); 1990: 6th (John Hudson); 1991: 10th (Stephen Roberts); 1992: 6th (Stephen Sykes); 1993: 3rd (Archie Hutchinson); 1994: 5th (Archie Hutchinson); 1995: 5th (Anthony Swainson); 1996: 7th (Bryan Allen); 1997: 8th (Bryan Allen)

Allan RamseyThe All-England International Champions make a return here after their last appearance in 2003 when directed by Nicholas Childs where they finished in seventh place.  They were regular attendees during the 90s having first made their debut at this event in 1979 when Nigel Boddice conducted them. 

Bryan Allen, John Hudson, Archie Hutchinson, Stephen Roberts, Howard Snell, Steve Sykes and Geoffrey Whitham have all conducted the Scots under different names down the years and on two occasions in 1989 and 1993 they came really close to taking the title home to Scotland for the first time in its history.

This time around, Allan Ramsay will front the band's challenge and on the evidence of how they performed in Morley at the end of October, they appear to be in good form, and they're expected to challenge here. Listen out for a couple of real gems of pieces that they used there, and for their soloists like Paul Kiernan who is as good as anything around.

Player to listen out for:
Alison Bonnar – one of the finest euphoniums around with a lovely sound


Grimethorpe Grimethorpe Colliery UK Coal
www.grimethorpeband.com

4BR Ranking: 7
Conductor: Richard Evans

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Richard Marshall
Euphonium: Michael Dodd
Trombone: Richard Brown
Soprano: Kevin Crockford
Horn: Sandy Smith
Flugel: Ian Shires
Baritone: Bob Blackburn
Eb Tuba: Shaun Crowther
Percussion: Gavin Pritchard

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances: 26th time
Debut: 1977
Best Result: Winners: 12 times
Worst Result: 4th: 1996

Last 7 Years:
2004: Winners (Richard Evans) (7)
2003: Winners (Garry Cutt) (6)
2002: Winners (Garry Cutt) (6)
2001: Winners (Garry Cutt) (9)
2000: 3rd (Garry Cutt) (4)
1999: Winners (Garry Cutt) (9)
1998:  DNC

Also: 1977: Winners (Fred Partlett); 1978: 3rd (Frank Renton); 1979: Winners (Ray Farr); 1980: Winners (Ray Farr); 1981: Winners (Ray Farr); 1982: 2nd (Ray Farr); 1983: Winners (Ray Farr); 1985: 3rd (David James); 1986: Winners (David James); 1987: 3rd (David James); 1998: 2nd (Frank Renton); 1989: 2nd (Frank Renton); 1990: 3rd (Frank Renton); 1991: 2nd (Frank Renton); 1992: 2nd (Frank Renton); 1993: Winners (Garry Cutt); 1994: Winners (Garry Cutt); 1995: 2nd (Garry Cutt); 1996: 4th (Garry Cutt)  

2004 Programme:
Los Harminos de Bop, Mark Taylor, arr Sandy Smith
The Bonnie Briar Bush arr Elgar Howarth
Virtuosity, Richard Marshall (Trumpet), Kenny Baker arr J Peseeoy
The Little Fugue in G Minor, JS Bach, arr Sandy Smith
I've Got You Under My Skin, Cole Porter, arr Sandy Smith
1712 Overture, PDQ Bach, arr Sandy Smith

2003 Programme:
Comedy Tonight - arr S Smith
Body & Soul - arr Joe Cook, Flugel: Ian Shires
Dance of the Pirates - Khachaturian - arr S Smith
The Humming Chorus - Puccini arr S Smith
The Lady is a Tramp Rodgers arr S Smith
If I Were a Rich Man - Bass Trombone, Mark Frost
Bock arr S Smith
An Expedition for Band: Galaxies - Carl Davis transcribed by Ray Farr

Richard EvansThe best entertaining band around?  It's hard to argue against it with their track record here and the fact that week in, week out, they're playing to packed houses everywhere.  Last year, people did wonder if Grimethorpe without Garry Cutt, might lose their edge a bit.  Not a chance, Richard Evans, the ultimate entertainer took over and the level of performance went up if anything!

Last year, they were just different class on the day and in conversation with 4BR afterwards, Richard Evans made the point that it wouldn't be long before the band started thinking about it's programme for this year. We are sure that was planned and executed well in advance and we can look forward to their usual slick presentation and fine arrangements from Sandy Smith to form the center piece of their programme. 

Grimey are back in form as the Yorkshire Area, Open and Nationals proved, and now they turn their attention to what they do best, entertain. With the talent at their disposal they will be the band to beat for sure.

Player to listen out for:
Richard Marshall – the cornet virtuoso extraordinaire – his talents as a soloist are legendary and last year he brought the house down with his trumpet rendition of 'Virtuosity'. 


Mount CharlesMount Charles
www.mountcharlesband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 23
Conductor: Nigel Weeks

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Ian Thomas
Euphonium: Neil Pascoe
Trombone: Shaun Vercoe
Soprano: Jon Small
Horn: Graham Barker
Flugel: Tim Whitehead
Baritone: Terry Sleeman
Eb Tuba: Nick Boy
Percussion: Derek Thomas

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances: 4th time
Debut: 2002
Best Result: 3rd: 2002
Worst Result: 10th: 2004

Last 3 Years:
2004:  10th (Morten E Hansen) (8)
2003:  4th (Russell Gray) (1)
2002:  3rd (Bryan Hurdley) (9)
 
2004 Programme:
Mardi Gras in New Orleans
Lokkeslaton
Tanga, Jon Small (Trumpet)
Letter From Home
Breaking Up is Hard To Do, Bass Feature
Reel Music

2003 Programme:
Alev Zornjaea (Red Morning Star) - Frode Rydland
Bucimis (Bulgarian Folk Dance) - Frode Rydland
Domen - Jan Mange Forde, Flugel: Tim Whitehead
Ejala - Jan Mange Forde
Scherzo Without Instruments
Unisons - Mikhail Alperin
Bucimis Ending - Frode Rydland

Nigel WeeksThere must be something in the water down Cornwall way because when it comes to entertainment, Mount Charles really do bring something a bit different to the contesting stage. 

In 2003 Russell Gray chose a brave and wickedly different concert set that included four of them dropping their trousers and doing a bit of knee slapping - and it brought the house down (although more conservative types thought it the end of the world). Morten E Hansen's programme didn't meet the eye of the judges last year and they came in 10th place, but we are sure they will be keen to make an impression once more, so look out for something to make you smile – or possibly cringe!

Nigel Weeks takes the helm this time, and the Welshman turned New Zealander made a fine reputation for himself in the Southern hemisphere for entertaining programmes both in contests and concerts. If he brings that to this performance they could well feature as highly as they did in 2002 – they have the talent and the spirit to do it on the day – of not, it could be along journey home.

Player to look out for:
Ian Thomas – Principal Cornet – Mount Charles through and through


Brighouse and RastrickBrighouse & Rastrick
www.brighouseandrastrickband.co.uk

4BR Ranking:
9
Conductor: James Gourlay

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Alan Morrison
Euphonium: Brendan Wheeler
Trombone: James Stockdale
Soprano: Nigel Fielding
Horn: Melvyn Bathgate
Flugel: Neil Hewson
Baritone: Leigh Baker
Eb Tuba: David Hebb
Percussion: Jason Poulston

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances:
none
Debut: 2005

James GourlayIt's almost unbelievable to think that one of the most famous name's in banding is making their debut here after twenty-nine years of this competition.  In the 1970's they flirted a bit with the famous old Granada Band of the Year contest – winning it in 1975, but soon afterwards they decided not to commit themselves to the fledgling Spennymoor contest and only now do they enter the fray. It is a major coup for the organisers.

Brighouse are not just one of the most famous names around, but they're renowned for their entertaining concerts – and although they do not take to the road as often as say Grimethorpe, on home ground in particular they pack out the halls and provide good entertainment for hard to be impressed Yorkshire folk.  That says a lot!

Right around the stand there is an array of talented soloists that shine: Alan Morrison, Nigel Fielding, Brenden Wheeler, the BBC Radio 2 Young Brass Soloist of 2005; not forgetting to recent signings, Neil Hewson on flugel and Daniel Powell on horn. They are not short of talent to showcase.

James Gourlay makes his first return at this contest since Williams Fairey in 1997.  Some of the gentlemen at Faireys have been dressed as ballet dancers whilst James was in charge, so you never known what the Scot might have up his sleeve for the West Riding boys!

Whatever you do, take the chance to listen to B & R – they're bound to not just put an entertaining programme together, but will fancy their chances at taking the soloists prize. With so much talent at their disposal they could well make it a winning debut here, who knows?

Player to listen out for:
Alan Morrison – the top notch cornet player just loves to entertain.


PolysteelPolysteel (Flowers)
www.polysteelband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 18
Conductor: Philip Harper

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Chris Howley
Euphonium: Andy Hicks
Trombone: Nathan Jenkins
Soprano: Andrew Julian
Horn: Richard Knight
Flugel: Danny Winder
Baritone: Carolyn Chandler
Eb Tuba: Stewart Baglin
Percussion: Steve Jones

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances: 4th time
Debut: 1998
Best Result: 6th: 2003, 2004
Worst Result: 11th: 1998

Last 7 Years:
2004:  6th (Philip Harper) (3)
2003:  6th (Philip Harper) (3)
2002:  DNC
2001:  DNC
2000:  DNC
1999:  DNC
1998:  11th (Michael Fowles) (8)

2004 Programme:
The Magnificent Seven: Chris Howley (Soprano)
Richard Selvidge (Cornet)
Julia Telling (Flugel)
Andy Hicks (Euphonium)
Steve Sykes (Bass)
Steve Jones (Percussion), Elmer Bernstein arr Philip Harper
Swingy Thing, Richard Knight (Tenor Horn), Philip Harper
Hynm to St Barnabus, Philip Harper
Mais Que Nada, Jorge Ben, arr Philip Harper
One Thousand and One Nights, Rimsky-Korsakov, arr Philip Harper
Hawaii 5 0, Lala Shifrin, arr Philip Harper

2003 Programme:
The Contester - T J Powell
Hungarian Melodies - V Bach arr Philip Harper, Cornet:Kevin Robbins
Queen Isabel's Prayer - Philip Harper
Salsa No.2 - David Shire arr Philip Harper
Gladiator - Hans Zimmer/Lisa Gerard arr Philip Harper
The Muppet Show - arr Philip Harper

Philip HarperPhilip Harper and his band will be looking to finish higher than they have over the past couple of years when they've finished in 6th place both times.

Renowned for being consummate entertainers, they're never worried about trying something different to entertain their audiences and invariably it comes off – especially the Latin American stuff which they perform better than just about any band in the world.

The one thing that Philip Harper's programme will bring is some cracking arrangements and new compositions.  One of banding's finest talents is bound to have something up his sleeve from the sheer beauty of his ‘Queen Isabel Prayer' to the quirky but fun ‘Muppets'. If his band can reproduce the form that they are more than capable of then they could take a couple of notable steps towards a very high finish. Whatever they choose to do, it will certainly be entertaining for sure.

Player to listen out for:
Andy Hicks – a fine euphonium player who will shine in the very best of company.


Hepworth Persimmon HomesHepworth Persimmon Homes Band
www.hepworthband.com

4BR Ranking: 14
Conductor: Mark Bentham

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Robert Westacott
Euphonium: James Fieldhouse
Trombone: Yvonne Embury
Soprano: Mark Smedley
Horn: Rebecca Landon
Flugel: Catherine Booth
Baritone: Nicholas Young
Eb Tuba: John Pullin
Percussion: Alex Helleur

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances:
none
Debut: 2005
 
Mark BenthamAnother band making its debut here this year, and it has been well merited based on the impact they have made on the banding world over the past couple of seasons.  This year has seen them come close at the Yorkshire areas, win the Grand Shield, gain eighth place off number one at the All-England International Masters, and repeat that result in Birmingham at the Open off another early draw of number two. That equates to a very good band.

Entertainment wise, Mark Bentham and his band have gained a reputation for doing something that little bit different, but they have a lot of traditional qualities to fall back on too. Mark Bentham is no stranger here as he conducted Ever Ready a few times in his youth (although he isn't exactly an old timer in 2005!) and his drive and commitment are essential ingredients to the bands performances.

Lots of quality players around the stands too and we are sure some of them such as Robert Westacott will be featured at some point.  A very ambitious band and one full of confidence, they could well be a dark horse for the podium places at least.  

Player to listen out for:
Rob Westacott – the band's principal cornet player and one of the best there is


Ransome
www.ransomeband.co.uk

4BR Ranking: 19
Conductor:  Chris Jeans

Principal Players:
Principal Cornet: Pete Collins
Euphonium: David Belshaw
Trombone:
Soprano: David Bird
Horn: George Thackray
Flugel: Chris North
Baritone: Carol Crompton
Eb Tuba: James Henson
Percussion: Jez Smith

Brass in Concert Record:
Appearances: 11th time
Debut: 1977
Best Result: 5th: 2000
Worst Result: 11th: 2003

Last 7 Years:
2004:  8th (Graham O'Connor) (6)
2003:  11th (Steve Bastable) (7)
2002:  5th (Peter Parkes) (8)
2001:  7th (Russell Gray) (4)
2000:  5th (Russell Gray) (5)
1999:  6th (Brian Grant) (5)
1998:  6th (Brian Grant) (2)

Also: 1977: 8th (Stephen Shimwell); 1978: 9th (Stephen Shimwell); 1979: 10th (Stephen Shimwell) 

2004 Programme:
Accidental Mambo, Reid Gilje
New Colonial, R B Hall
Fatherland, David Belshaw (Euphonium) arr K R Johnson
I Know Thou Art Mine, Leonard Ballantine
Chicago, arr Barry Forgie
Born to Battle, Brenton Broadstock

2003 Programme:
Marche Lorraine - Louis Ganne
My Ain Folk - Peter Graham, Flugel:Lucy Murphy
Caravan - Juan Tizol & Duke Ellington arr Steve Sykes
Hornpipe Humoresque - Noel Rawsthorne arr Andrew Duncan
Bees-a-Buzzin - Edrich Siebert
Finale Symphony No 2 Little Russian - Tchaikovsky arr William Gordon

Ransome has been pretty good value for money here over the years with more than a handful of top six finishes, but over the past couple outings here they've been too inconsistent on the day to feature.  Last year's 8th place was an improvement on 2003 when the came 11th, but they didn't really set the world on fire.

That is very much unlike them and this year they're front by Chris Jeans, the talented trombonist and conductor of Youth Brass 2000.  Chris's programme's with Youth Brass have been innovative to say the least, so it will be interesting to see what he and Ransome come up with this year – it could be a real cracker.

On their day they can really sound as good as anyone and 2005 has been a decent year so far results wise. It depends on their programme and their approach, but it should be well worth listening too nonetheless.

Player to listen out for:
David Belshaw – a fine exponent of the euphonium who'll relish the opportunity to shine

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