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2017 European Championships
Youth Section - As it happened

All the action from the 2017 European Championships — Youth Section — as it happened.

Sunday 30, 16:33:09

Results:


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The home nation of Belgium is celebrating as Young Brass Band Willebroek retains its title.

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Premier Section Winners: Young Brass Band Willebroek (Frans Violet)

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Young Brass Band Willebroek retains its European Premier Section title.

Premier Section:

Test Piece: 'Dimensions' (Peter Graham) & Own Choice Programme
Adjudicators: Kevin Houben, Dr David Thornton

1. Young Brass Band Willebroek (Frans Violet) — 94
2. Youth Brass 2000 (Chris Jeans) — 93
3. Berner Oberland Junior (Jan Muller) — 89
4. Swedish Youth (Berit Palmquist) — 87

Best Instrumentalist: Thomas Fountain (cornet) Youth Brass 2000


Sunday 30, 16:32:03

Results:


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European joy in Oostende for Elland Silver Youth in the Development Section.

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Development Section: Elland Silver Youth (Samantha Harrison)

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Elland Silver Youth painst the Kursaal Concert Hall red with stunning victory.

Development Section:

Test Piece: 'Little Suite for Brass No.2 (Sir Malcolm Arnold) & Own Choice Programme
Adjudicators: Anne Crookston, Bart Picquueur

1. Elland Silver Youth (Samantha Harrison) — 95
2. Tertnes Skoles Musikkorps (Jan Egil Jorgensen — 92
3. Manger Skulemusikklag (Thorgeir Thunestvedt) — 90
4. Aukstyn (Steve Legge) — 88
5. 1st Old Boys Youth (Jacklin Bingham) — 87
6. Scottish Borders Youth (Alan Fernie) — 86

Best Instrumentalist: Joseph Heartfield (trombone) — Elland Silver Youth


Sunday 30, 15:17:07

Premier Section:

Malcolm Wood's Final round up and prediction:

A relatively short contest by comparison to the remainder of the weekend, but one that showed quality over quantity.

The quality of the playing has been very good, demonstrating that there is a lot of fine talent around Europe with a number intent on returning next year and beyond.

4BR Prediction:

Of the four bands its Young Brass Band Willebroek and Youth Brass 2000 that stood out for us and the winner could justifiably go to either of them. That decision is down to Mr Houben and Mr Thornton of course.

The results will be announced after the concert by the European Youth Band.


Sunday 30, 14:42:22

Premier Section:

4. Swedish Youth (Berit Palmquist)


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Ready to play: Swedish Youth (Berit Palmquist)

Dimensions (Peter Graham)
Rusalkas Song to the Moon (Dvorak arr. Gordon Langford — cornet soloist: Daniel Bjrnell)
Till Matilda (Mikael Nybo)
The Irish Blessing (Joyce Eilers Bacak arr. Stephen Bradnum)
Keighley Moor (Joe Cook).

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On Stage: Swedish Youth (Berit Palmquist)

The final 'Dimensions' of the contest takes a little time to settle before the players find their musical feet.

Principal cornet, Daniel Bjornell steps forward and digs deep to deliver a 'Rusalka's Song to the Moon', that tested him, but one that showed his character.

'Till Matilda' is light and breezy whilst the quartet that leads the way in 'The Irish Blessing' display warm musical sounds and they are tenderly supported by the ensemble.

To close, a rarity on this intensive musical weekend, a march, and the former signature march of the great Yorkshire Building Society Band, 'Keighley Moor', played at a fine tempo.

Overall: Another well judged programme that certainly played to the strengths of the band, but tested them along the way.

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In Performance: Swedish Youth (Berit Palmquist)


Sunday 30, 14:05:04

Premier Section:

3. Berner Oberland Junior (Jan Muller)


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Ready to play: Berner Oberland Junior (Jan Muller)

Dimensions (Peter Graham)
Prelude and Capriccio (Edward Gregson) Cornet soloist: Nadja Gerber
Shine as the Light (Peter Graham)

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Prelude and Capriccio (Edward Gregson) Cornet soloist: Nadja Gerber

The Swiss challenger takes to the stage and immediately shows its potential with a measured reading of 'Dimensions'. It's paced to allow the music to shine, and whilst not everything clicks into place, the burgeoning maturity of the playing is apparent. They have such a lovely tonality.

Nadaj Gerber is a cornet player to look out for after a bold eight minutes of playing in Gregson's 'Prelude and Capriccio'. The opening was reflective whilst the 'Capriccio' is jazzy, before the lyrical technique of the player comes to the fore.

Peter Graham's, 'Shine as the Light' suits their lovely tonal qualities. There is a real vividness here about the playing and the tempo never drags. There are some fine individual contributions along the way and it closes confidently.

Overall: A well judged programme from a band with a lovely sound.

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In Performance: Berner Oberland Junior (Jan Muller)


Sunday 30, 13:30:55

Premier Section:

2. Young Brass Band Willebroek (Frans Violet)


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Ready to play: Young Brass Band Willebroek (Frans Violet)

Enter the Galaxies (Paul Lovatt-Cooper)
Pictures from Wartime (world premiere) (Stijn Aertgeerts) Cornet soloist: Lode Violet
Dimensions (Peter Graham)
Sing, Sing, Sing (Louis Prima / arr. Dan Price).

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Pictures from Wartime (world premiere) (Stijn Aertgeerts) Cornet soloist: Lode Violet

The defending champion really goes for the jugular from the off with the high octane PLC 'Enter the Galaxies'. Anyone having a Sunday afternoon snooze will have been jolted by that one. So much detail, clarity and musical technique.

Next we have the distinguished cornet sounds of Lode Violet in the premiere of 'Pictures from Wartime'. What a wonderful solo voice, never mind technique. This is terrific mature playing, way beyond his young years. The accompaniment is both sensitive and intense as it portrays the terrors of war. The reaction of the composer at the end says it all. Truly great playing.

'Dimensions' is given a tasteful rendition, with lots of mature warm sounds. There are some excellent contributions from all around the stand with fine solo voices. Full marks to Frans Violet for the way he has laid this performance out.

The concluding 'Sing, Sing, Sing' beggars belief. The drums beat as players move positions and then they are un-leased; instrumental contributions of the highest order. It's like a youth version of Cory, complete with musical swagger.

Overall: You have to remember this is a youth band. Stunning stuff and wonder if another title could be in their grasp.

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The cornets feature in Sing, Sing, Sing


Sunday 30, 12:59:01

Premier Section:

1. Youth Brass 2000 (Chris Jeans)


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Ready to play: Youth Brass 2000 (Chris Jeans)

Amazonia from Windows of the World (Peter Graham)
Dimensions (Peter Graham)
Jubilance (William Himes) Cornet soloist: Thomas Fountain
Abide With Me (Henry Francis Lyte / Karl Jenkins arr. Peter Graham),
Finale from Dances and Arias (Edward Gregson).

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Jubilance (William Himes) Cornet soloist: Thomas Fountain

The English contender starts their bid for the title with 'Amazonia' from 'Windows of the World' without the MD stepping foot on the stage. To say they are 'pumped up' is an understatement. It's an impressive opener for sure.

Peter Graham's 'Dimensions' is not out of their comfort zone. The ensemble sound is nicely compact and the solo lines lyrical and expressive. There is the odd moment, but you'd have thought the MD would be more than happy with that account.

Thomas Fountain steps forward to deliver a cracking rendition of 'Jubilance' by William Himes — one that is both agile and forthright. As those in the UK and much further a field know, this young man can certainly play. Bravo!

'Abide with Me' — the Christian hymn by Scottish Anglican Henry Francis Lyte once more features Thomas Fountain as the cornet lead, and is ably supported by a lovely ensemble and warm sounding horn.

The finale from 'Dances and Arias' is rich in clarity and musical intent and doesn't hang around to round of things is imposing fashion.

Overall: An excellent programme and a substantive marker to beat.

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On Stage: Youth Brass 2000 (Chris Jeans)


Sunday 30, 12:38:42

Premier Section 1pm start

There will be a short break now before the Premier Section starts in twenty minutes with two different judges.


Sunday 30, 12:37:26

Development Section :

Malcolm Wood's final round up and prediction

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Stein Skorpholm — Master of Ceremonies and the compere for this weekend in Oostende

What a great way to spend a Sunday morning. Six bands who really enjoyed their contesting experience and delivered some great contrasting programmes, each played to their strengths.

The set-work was a good choice — not beyond them — but tested the basics of good band playing. It will be a dog fight at the top and a case of whether Elland Silver Youth can stop the Norwegians finishing first and second.

The Scots could just be on the heels of the top three though. The results will be announced after the Premier Section and concert by the European Youth Band.

4BR Prediction:

1. Tertnes Skoles Musikkorps
2. Elland Silver Youth
3. Manger Skulemusikklag


Sunday 30, 12:07:19

Development Section:

6. Scottish Borders Youth (Alan Fernie)


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Ready to play: Scottish Borders Youth (Alan Fernie)

Starlight (Alan Fernie)
...than water... (Alan Fernie) Cornet soloist: Callum Robb
Little Suite No. 2 (Malcolm Arnold)
Firefly (Simon Dobson)

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On Stage: Scottish Borders Youth (Alan Fernie)

The Scots close the contest with a programme influenced by their MD, the talented Alan Fernie.

The opening 'Starlight' is full of musical vigour and intent. The MD drives the passion through the veins of the players and they respond superbly. Cornet soloist, Callum Robb is composed in the tranquil 'than water...' — again composed by the MD. What lovely playing this is; so tender and delicate, giving every note and phrase, time and space.

'Little Suite No 2', tests them, but so much to appreciate from the opening 'Allegro Molto e Ritmico'. And whilst there were some tricky moments in the central element, the closing 'Gallop' finds them in their comfort zone. Careful on the dynamics though…

The offbeat Simon Dobson 'Firefly' is music they thrive on. The percussion keeps the pulse moving briskly and there is real energy about the playing.

Overall: A great programme from the Scots, with the MD using his own compositions to expertly play to the strengths of his ensemble.

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In Performance: Scottish Borders Youth (Alan Fernie)


Sunday 30, 11:30:58

Development Section:

5. Manger Skulemusikklag (Thorgeir Thunestvedt)


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Ready to play: Manger Skulemusikklag (Thorgeir Thunestvedt)

Pseude-Yoik (Jaakko M'ntyj'rvi arr. 'yvind R. Nikolaisen)
Little Suite No. 2 (Malcolm Arnold)
Abendlied (Evening Song) (Josef Rheinberger arr. Espen Haukas)
Red Shoe Dance Sequence No. 2 (Martin Winter) Flugel soloist: Eilin Lilletveit
The Incredibles (Michael Giacchino arr Philip Harper).

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Gentle chorus in Abendlied (Evening Song)

The second Norwegian contender (packed with players) takes to the stage to loud applause from supporters in the hall. And just like Tertnes, they start by making an impression with 'Pseude-Yoik' — full of great detail.

The performance of the set-work is a gem. Great care is taken with each section with lots of good musical contrasts. There are tiny blemishes, but the MD knows how to nurture things and just get on with it.

Now then, a female vocalist who not just brings something different, but makes a huge impression. No karaoke rock style hitting you between the eyes but tender, lyrical singing before being joined by other players. Classy, very classy stuff with excellent ensemble playing that never interfered with the singing.

Martin Winter's flamboyant 'Red Shoe Dance Sequence No. 2' showcases a flugel player who demonstrates real virtuosity. There's the odd moment, but it doesn't detract from the performance.

The closing 'The Incredibles' flies along with breathtaking musical freedom and clarity. Hells bells, it's very tasty.

Overall: With Eikanger's victory in the Championship Section, you start to wonder if the Norwegian competitors will take all before them this weekend. Seriously impressive and going to be close at the top.

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In performance: Manger Skulemusikklag (Thorgeir Thunestvedt)


Sunday 30, 11:03:36

Development Section:

4. Aukstyn (Steve Legge)


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Fanfare 'Tu mums viena' (Kazys Daugela)
Little Suite No. 2 (Malcom Arnold)
Carnival of Venice (James Benedict and Harry James arr. Mark Freeh) Cornet soloist: Indre Jonaityte
The Smile (Matthew Hall)
Funky Brass (Otto M. Schwarz)

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On Stage: Aukstyn (Remigijus Vilys)

The Lithuanians take to the stage resplendent in green shirt. The opening fanfare ''Tu mums viena' is brief and compact, but really hits the spot.

Arnold's set-test proves to be a touch tricky. There are some of nerves and unease (especially in the middle section) that test them, but full marks to the conductor who steadies things whilst they relax more in the homeward 'Galop'.

The young cornet player produces a lovely sound and technique in the old standard 'Carnival of Venice'. In contrast, Matthew Hall's 'The Smile' is beautiful and tender, incorporating three favourite hymn tunes of the composer's grandfather who insoired the work.

To close comes 'Funky Brass' — and its just that: Funky, off the wall and full of fun with fine solo and ensemble additions.

Overall: What a fine programme that was. In the context of the competition it had didn't have some of the clarity of the others, but what a fine ensemble in the making this is.

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In performance 'Funky Brass': Aukstyn (Remigijus Vilys)


Sunday 30, 10:27:11

Development Section:

3. Elland Silver Youth (Samantha Harrison)


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Ready to play: Elland Silver Youth

Fanfare for a New Age (Goff Richards)
The Wind Beneath my Wings (Jeff Silbar and Larry Henley arr. Darrol Barry) Trombone soloist: Joseph Heartfield
Starburst (Dan Price)
Little Hymn (Simon Dobson)
Little Suite No. 2 (Malcom Arnold)

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On Stage: Elland Silver Youth

The English contender opens its challenge with the first two pieces a reprise of part of their National Youth Competition programme earlier this month.

'Fanfare for a New Age' with cornets and trombones standing is not just full of clarity and great detail, but is tight and cemented together so well.

'The Wind beneath my Wings' is a sumptuous bit of trombone playing from a young man who took the Instrumentalist prize in Salford at the Youth Championships. Such great technique and the ensemble accompaniment is nicely balanced.

Dan Price's 'Starburst' hits you between the eyes and features some rich musical sounds and great percussion playing.

Simon Dobson's delightful 'Little Hymn' opens up with a lovely quartet from the side of the stage. It's nicely controlled and leads into ensemble playing that is delicate on the ear and delivered without fear.

'Little Suite No. 2' opens with energy which is maintained throughout the opening section. The 'Cavatina' — 'Andante Con Moto' central section displays a firm hand from the middle. There is the odd tricky moment, but all do well, including the solo lines. The 'Galop' doesn't half fizz around but the clarity is great.

Overall: High quality playing from the Yorkshire outfit. As they say in that part of the world: 'ave it' — and they certainly didn't hold back. Sam Harrison encouraged and smiled all they way through, which was great to see — and you could understand why.

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Taking the applause: Elland Silver Youth


Sunday 30, 09:57:23

Development Section:

2. Tertnes Skoles Musikkorps (Jan Egil Jorgensen)


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Ready to play: Tertnes Skoles Musikkorps

Unisons (Mikhail Misha Alperin arr. Svein Henrik Giske)
Little Suite No. 2 (Malcom Arnold)
Glasshouse Whispers (Benjamin Tubb) Horn soloist: Astrid Bratland Lund
Caravan (Duke Ellington/Juan Tizol arr. Steve Sykes).

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The defending champion from Norway hits the ground running with the funky 'Unisons' that is full of clarity and detail. What a great start.

Attention turns to the set-test and there is real attention to detail here in the opening 'Allegro Molto e Ritmico'. The central 'Andante Con Moto' is steady, with just the odd bit of unease in the ensemble, but they do well and brush it off. The 'Presto' to close is fun, with tight control on the dynamics and tempos.

Next up is the tender sound of the tenor horn — and what a fine bit of playing this is in 'Glasshouse Whispers'. So secure in the technical and musical elements, and the ensemble playing is of such a high quality. Bravo!

The closing 'Caravan' just dazzles — and isn't right in your face. There is some great solo lines and ensemble playing.

Overall: The defending champion really delivered the goods today, and it will take a band in great form to beat them. Simply superb.

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Sunday 30, 09:31:35

Development Section:

1. 1st Old Boys (Jacklin Bingham)


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Ready to play: 1st Old Boys (Jacklin Bingham)

March — 1914 (Gordon MacKenzie)
The Maid of the Mourne Shore (Idar Torskangerpoll — cornet soloist: Louise Bell)
Little Suite No. 2 (Malcom Arnold)
Standing on the Promises (Erik Silfverberg — tuba soloist: Andrew Milligan)
Prismatic Light (Alan Fernie)

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Standing on the Promises — Soloist — Andrew Milligan

The opening march bristles with energy and has tasteful dynamics and confidence grows as the players know things are going well.

The traditional Celtic melody 'The Maid of the Mourne Shore' features a lovely sounding cornet that stands in front of the band without nerves. The accompaniment is sensitive and nicely balanced.

Next up we hear the first offering of the set test for the section, Arnold's 'Little Suite No. 2'. This takes time to settle as some nerves creep in especially within the ensemble. They do well though, especially in the concluding section that bubbles along nicely.

'Standing on the Promises' is a fun number with a confident bass lead that puts a smile on the face. The closing 'Prismatic Light' moves along with a good pulse, but there is just a hint of tiredness in the ranks.

Overall: Great show — not easy at 9.30am on a Sunday morning.

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On Stage: 1st Old Boys (Jacklin Bingham)


Sunday 30, 09:13:31

European Youth Brass Band Contest

Development Section:

Test Piece: 'Little Suite for Brass No.2 (Sir Malcolm Arnold) & Own Choice Programme

Draw: Pre-drawn
Commence: 9.30am (local time)

Adjudicators:
Anne Crookston, Bart Picquueur

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1st Old Boys set to open the contest

1. 1st Old Boys (Jacklin Bingham)
2. Tertnes Skoles Musikkorps (Jan Egil Jorgensen
3. Elland Silver Youth (Samantha Harrison)
4. Aukstyn (Remigijus Vilys)
5. Manger Skulemusikklag (Thorgeir Thunestvedt)
6. Scottish Borders Youth (Alan Fernie)

Premier Section Section:

Test Piece: 'Dimensions' (Peter Graham) & Own Choice Programme

Draw: Pre-drawn
Commence: at conclusion of Developmemt Section

Adjudicators:
Kevin Houben, Dr David Thornton

1. Youth Brass 2000 (Chris Jeans)
2. Young Brass Band Willebroek (Frans Violet)
3. Bener Oberland Junior (Jan Muller)
4. Swedish Youth (Berit Palmquist)


Sunday 30, 09:12:09

Focus on Youth

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Good morning from Oostende. The bands involved in the Championship and Challenge Sections will have partied hard into the early hours and some perhaps won't have gone to bed.

The youngsters involved today will have been tucked up well before the results were known last night in preparation for todays event.

4BR's Malcolm Wood will be bringing live comments with Iwan Fox and Ian Clowes backstage.

Join us throughout the day for our coverage



Gloucestershire Brass Band Association - Own Choice March & Test Piece Contest

Sunday 19 November • All Saints’ Academy. Blaisdon Way. Cheltenham GL51 0WH


Rotherham Schools' Youth Brass Band - Fountain City Brass Band

Monday 20 November • Rotherham Minster - Rotherham s60 1pd


Foden's Band - Matt Ford - Lichfield Cathedral

Friday 24 November • 19A The Close, Lichfield WS13 7LD


Lofthouse Brass Band - Pudsey Churches Together Christmas Concert

Saturday 25 November • Pudsey Parish Church, Church Lane, Pudsey, LS28 7BD LS28 7BD


Lofthouse Brass Band - Lofthouse Christmas Fair

Saturday 25 November • Lofthouse Methodist Church, Leeds Road, Lofthouse, Wakefield WF3 3NE


Newstead Brass

November 18 • Bb Cornet (position negotiable). . Newstead Brass, established Midlands Championship section, have opportunity for an additional cornet player. Suitable for experienced player or someone looking to take the next step in their development.


Wakefield Metropolitan Brass Band

November 17 • FRONT ROW CORNET. SOLO TROMBONE. . The band have an exciting concert/contest/marching schedule ahead. We are looking for a committed front row cornet and solo trombone player to come and join us in the Yorkshire 1st Section! MD: Richard Larder.


Glossop Old Band

November 17 • SOLO TROMBONE. The Glossop Old Band Welcomes applications for the Solo Trombone Chair. The Band will be competing in the First Section as of 2018 and are looking to continue its progression back to the top levels of performance


Jack Capstaff

Bmus (Hons)
Conductor | Composer