2009 Australian Band Championships - A Grade: Preview

7-Apr-2009

Friday 10 April, circa. 11.30am
Hall One, Seymour Centre
Test & Hymn: Dove Descending, Philip Wilby
Own Choice & Stage March: Sunday 12 April, circa. 11.30am
Adjudicator: Professor David King


14 bands contest this years A Grade Championship.

With the return of Jason Katsikaris from the UK in early March, the dynamic maestro has had ample time to prepare Gunnedah for its first A Grade National title.  Gunnedah came oh so close to a National title win in NZ in 2007, and were hot on the heels of Brisbane Excelsior in 2008, so this year, the country team would have to be considered favourites.

Serious threats will come from Kew Band Melbourne, and the newly formed Moore Park View Brass.

Solid performances are expected from the usually consistent bands Footscray-Yarraville, Glenorchy, Willoughby, St Marys, & Warringah.

Word is Nigel Weeks has been weaving his musical magic as guest conductor of Holroyd and is a keenly anticipated appearance. 

Five conductors make their A Grade National debut in Sydney. Warwick Tyrell will lead Waratah, Danny Dielkins is MD for Darebin Preston Brass, Mareika Gray has been recently appointed MD of South Brisbane Federal, Jon Christodoulides has taken over the reigns of Brisbane Brass, and Danny van Bergin leads the recently upgraded Boroondara Brass.

The Own Choice test selections include Between the Moon and Mexico (Sparke), Dreams (Moren), Earthquake (de Haan), Harmony Music (Sparke), Isaiah 40 (Redhead), Journey to the Centre of the Earth (Graham), Music of the Spheres (Sparke), On Alderley Edge (Graham), Rococo Variations (Gregson), Sounds (John Golland), The Essence Of Time (Peter Graham).


Philip WilbyThe Test Piece
Dove Descending by Philip Wilby

Dove Decending was written for the British Open Brass Band Championships of 1999 which was won by Yorkshire Building Society conducted by David King. The title is taken from the T.S. Eliot poem "Little Gidding" and is described by the composer as a Sonata in open tones. The performance requires a standard seating arrangement but in addition requires two groups of fanfare stands for ten cornet players which are to be placed in a five right/five left formation, plus three extra stands for trombones placed at a distance from the band and from each other. There is an optional organ part as well as the requirement to use a CD player. A seating plan is issued for the performing band to adhere to.

In essence the work is divided into two main parts, the first which the composer notes contains three elements - a heraldic fanfare, a musical picture of Time composed in the open tones of the harmonic series and then the Old Testament description of the coming of Christ. The second part by contrast is a beautiful solo prayer entitled Nativity which finally leads into a resolution and return of the coming of Christ.

The piece has proved to be immensely popular with both bands and audiences, even though it is a very long work in terms of time. It is though a very demanding work that only the very best bands can really make a true performance of.


Boroondara BrassBoroondara  Brass 
Conductor: Daniel Van Bergen

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - B Grade 4th
2006 - did not compete
2007 - B Grade 6th
2008 - B Grade 4th


Brisbane BrassBrisbane Brass 1 
Conductor: Jon Christodoulides

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - did not compete
2006 - A Grade 4th
2007 - did not compete
2008 - A Grade 10th


DarebinDarebin City Brass - Preston Band 
Conductor: Danny Dielkins

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 9th
2006 - A Grade 8th
2007 - A Grade 11th
2008 - A Grade 13th


Footscray-Yarraville City Band 
Conductor: Phillipa Edwards

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 7th
2006 - A Grade 15th
2007 - A Grade 3rd
2008 - A Grade 8th


GlenorchyGlenorchy City Concert Brass 
Conductor: Dean Hunt

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 8th
2006 - A Grade 14th
2007 - A Grade 10th
2008 - did not compete


GunnedahGunnedah Shire Band            
Conductor: Jason Katsikaris


Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - B Grade 1st
2006 - did not compete
2007 - did not compete
2008 - A Grade 2nd


HolroydCity of Holroyd Band           
Conductor: Nigel Weeks

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 12th
2006 - A Grade 9th
2007 - A Grade 14th
2008 - did not compete


KewKew Band Melbourne 
Conductor: Mark Ford

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 11th
2006 - A Grade 10th
2007 - A Grade 2nd
2008 - A Grade 5th


MPV Brass 
Conductor: Matthew Van Emmerick

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 -
2006 -
2007 -
2008 -


South Brisbane FederalSouth Brisbane Federal 
Conductor: Mareika Gray

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - did not compete
2006 - A Grade 6th
2007 - A Grade 7th
2008 - A Grade 11th


St MarysSt Marys Band Club Brass Band 
Conductor: Paul Terracini

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 4th
2006 - A Grade 13th
2007 - A Grade 6th
2008 - did not compete


Waratah BrassWaratah Brass - Newcastle 
Conductor: Warrick Tyrrell

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 2nd
2006 - A Grade 5th
2007 - did not compete
2008 - A Grade 3rd


WarringahWarringah Concert  Brass 
Conductor: John Saunders

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - B Grade 2nd
2006 - B Grade 2nd
2007 - A Grade 13th
2008 - A Grade 7th


Willoughby Willoughby City Band           
Conductor: Andrew Snell

 

Past 4 Year National Track Record:

2005 - A Grade 6th
2006 - A Grade 11th
2007 - A Grade 8th
2008 - A Grade 6th


4BRDU Predictions:

1. Gunnedah Shire Band
2. Moore Park View Brass
3. Kew Band Melbourne
Dark Horse:  Holroyd


Past Australian National A Grade winners:

1950 - St John Ambulance, NSW
1951 - St John Ambulance, NSW
1952 - Maryborough Federal
1953 - St John Ambulance, NSW  
1954 - not contested
1955 - St John Ambulance, NSW
1956 - St John Ambulance, NSW
1957 - Tanunda
1958 - South Brisbane Federal
1959 - Malvern, VIC
1960 - Maryborough Federal, QLD
1961 - Barrier Industrial Unions, NSW
1962 - Malvern Municipal, ViC
1963 - Barrier Industrial Unions, NSW
1964 - Malvern Municipal, ViC
1965 - South Brisbane Federal, QLD
1966 - Wollongong City, NSW
1967 - Kensington and Norwood, SA
1968 - Melbourne Fire Brigade, VIC
1969 - Malvern Municipal, VIC
1970 - Melbourne Fire Brigade, VIC
1971 - Malvern Municipal, VIC
1972 - Footscray-Yarraville City, VIC
1973 - Footscray-Yarraville, VIC
1974 - Footscray-Yarraville, VIC
1975 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1976 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1977 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1978 - Willoughby Municipal, NSW
1979 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1980 - Skellerup-Woolston, New Zealand
1981 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1982 - Willoughby Municipal, NSW
1983 - Continental Airlines Auckland Brass, New Zealand
1984 - Willoughby Municipal, NSW
1985 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1986 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1987 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1988 - Tenderkist Wanganui, New Zealand
1989 - Willoughby Municipal, NSW
1990 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1991 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1992 - Kensington and Norwood, SA
1993 - Hawthorn City, VIC
1994 -
1995 -
1996 - Fosters Auckland
1997 - Fosters Auckland
1998 - Kew Band, Vic
1999 - Hawthorn City, Vic
2000 - Kew Band, Vic
2001 - Dalewool-Auckland Brass
2002 - K & N City, SA
2003 - Waitakere City "Trusts" New Zealand
2004 - Hawthorn Band, Vic
2005 - Brisbane Excelsior, Qld
2006 - Brisbane Excelsior, Qld
2007 - Brisbane Excelsior, QLD
2008 - Brisbane Excelsior, QLD

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