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2012 Brass in Concert Championship — Five things we got to know

Five things we got to know from Brass in Concert at The Sage Gatehead on the weekend.

Harper

1. Philip Harper has stamped his long term identity mark on Cory

When Dr Robert Childs left Cory earlier this year there were some critics who felt the new MD would do well to last longer in the job than the new Chelsea manager.

However, after two impressive performances at the British Open and National Finals, the first piece of major silverware has been secured – and in the most impressive fashion.  

Now you won’t be hearing the dreaded vote of confidence coming out of the Rhondda any time soon.


Trophies

2. The new percentage game

It took a little getting used to – but the transparency engineered by a much more robust marking system gave the audience – and more importantly the bands, something they could fully understand and appreciate.

The illusion of a 27 point victory margin for Cory still didn’t hide the fact that they were placed first by three of the four independent judges.

It was also a testament to their musical excellence and the intelligent approach of their MD that they worked out the importance of the new percentage game weighted in favour of musical content.


Brighouse

3. Percussion features remain an acquired taste

As much as audiences admire the fun and games of the exotic ‘shed builders’, percussion features are still an acquired taste at brass band entertainment contests.

There was some wonderful playing on show – but rattling off a million notes on a xylophone, accompanied by a bass drum and a few vocal chants can still leave you yearning for a decent bit of slow melody cornet playing.


Carlton Main

4. Are all the new arrangements fully legit?

As much as we would like to think that all the new arrangements that appear at the event are innovative and captivating, does anyone really know if they are all totally legit?

Getting permission for a ‘one-off’ performance seems the best some bands can do in the circumstances, so could the organisers insist that in future they come with the publisher’s agreement that they can be played after the contest as well?


Reg Vardy

5.  The demise of slapstick humour

Say it quietly, but we may well have seen the last of awful slapstick humour at Brass in Concert.

Just the odd bad memory of times past this year, but also a few indications that a more mature musical intellect is appearing in the programmes of the best bands.



Foden's Band - Patrons Concert

Tuesday 20 February • Sandbach School. Crewe Rd, Sandbach CW11 3NS CW11 3NS


Regent Hall Concerts - RAF Chamber Ensemble

Friday 23 February • Regent Hall. (The Salvation Army). 275 Oxford Street. London W1C 2DJ (opposite RESERVED) W1C 2DJ


Milton Keynes Brass - "Blow away those Winter Blues"

Saturday 24 February • The United Reformed Church. High Street. Newport Pagnell MK16 0FH


Elland Silver Band -

Saturday 24 February • All Saints Church Savile Road Elland HX5 0NH


Marshfield Band - Marshfield Male Voice Choir

Saturday 24 February • Marshfield Community Centre. Hayfield. Marshfield SN14 8PG


Waltham St. Lawrence Silver Band

February 19 • A friendly non-contesting community band within easy reach of Maidenhead, Bracknell and Reading, we look forward to an exciting year under our new MD, Steve Block, and urgently need cornet players, front and back row, as well as baritone and BBb bass.


Strata Brass

February 17 • Require FRONT ROW CORNET (flexibility in the section) after Yorkshire Area (1st Section) in March.. Rehearsals SUN/WED.. MD Jonathan Bates (Solo Horn - Fodens Band). Sensible concert/contest schedule.


Shipston Town band

February 15 • We currently need a Kit percussionist, 2nd horn and Bb Bass as we prepare for the forthcoming Midlands Area at Bedworth in March. We are graded Section 4


Brett Baker

BSc (Hons), ARCM, PG Dip
Rath clinician, conductor, teacher, adjudicator, editor