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Report & Results: 2017 Swiss Open Contest

Home city success for Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern as they lay down the National contest gauntlet to rivals in winning the Swiss Open for first time since 2011.

Michael Bach
  Michael Bach led Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern to the title in their home city for the first time since 2011.

With the Swiss National Championship looming on the snow topped peaks of the Alps in November, Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern threw down the competitive gauntlet to rivals as they claimed the Swiss Open title at the KKL Concert Hall in their home city on the weekend.

Conducted by Michael Bach they regained the title they last won in 2011 to give the MD his fourth success at the multi-discipline event.

Brass Band 13 Etoiles led by James Gourlay was second, with Brass Band Berner Oberland conducted by Corsin Tudor in third. Defending champion Ensemble de Cuivres Valaisan was fifth behind the 'scratch ensemble' Wallberg Band led by Cory MD, Philip Harper. Recently crowned British Open champion Valaisia Brass Band did not take part.

Metropolis

The set-work was 'Metropolis 1927' by Peter Graham, with own-choice selections coming from a set of orchestral transcriptions. The separate march prize was claimed by Brass Band 13 Etoiles for their performance of 'Arnhem'.

Speaking directly to 4BR, winning MD Michael Bach said that the result gave Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern a huge boost as the former European champion looks to regain the National title in Montreux at the end of November.

"We are very pleased with the result and it gives us a lot of confidence as we look ahead to the Swiss National Championships," he said. "Winning here in our home city means a great deal to us all and we now hope to add to that with our first National success since 2013."

Norway bound

Michael had little time to celebrate the success though (above), as he was due to fly to Norway to work with the current European Champion, Eikanger Bjorsvik on a series of four major works for a concert next weekend in Bergen.

"That is something which I am really looking forward to. Eikanger is a magnificent band and the repertoire is so exciting. I'm sure my band will enjoy their celebrations before we start the hard work again."

Up to last note

When the final results were revealed that the destination of the title was certainly up for grabs right to the last note being heard at the famous KKL Hall, as the adjudication team of David Childs, Howard Lorriman, Carlo Balmelli, Pascal Eicher and Roman Brogli-Sacher made their deliberations.

With each judge given 60 marks (with the highest lowest then discounted), it was a superb performance of 'Metropolis 1927' by Wallberg under Philip Harper that first impressed most, ahead of Brass Band Berner Oberland with Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern in third. 13 Etoiles was joint fifth.

Turned tables

However, Luzern's stunning rendition of Respighi's 'Roman Festivals' completely turned the tables, ending just ahead of 13 Etoile's thrilling 'Capriccio Espagnol' by Rimsky-Korsakov, with Valaisian's 'Hunnenschlacht' ('Battle of the Huns') by Liszt a distant third.

Berner Oberland's 'Balfagor' by Respighi was fourth, with Wallberg's 'Checkmate' in seventh, enabling Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern to secure the title by a narrow two point margin.

Winning here in our home city means a great deal to us all and we now hope to add to that with our first National success since 2013Winning MD, Michael Bach

Result:

Adjudicators: David Childs, Howard Lorriman, Carlo Balmelli, Pascal Eicher, Roman Brogli-Sacher
Set Work/Own Choice = Total

1. Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern (Michael Bach): 170/179 = 349
2. Brass Band 13 Etoiles (James Gourlay): 165/177 = 342
3. Brass Band Berner Oberland (Corsin Tuor): 172/167 = 339
4. Wallberg Band (Philip Harper): 177/161 = 338
5. Ensemble de Cuivres Valaisan (Francois Roh): 165/170 = 335
6. Brass Band Fribourg (Maurice Donnet-Monay): 169/160 = 329
7. Brass Band Luzern Land (Hervé Grélat): 162/165 = 327
8. Ensemble de Cuivres Mélodia (Vincent Baroni): 160/166 = 326
9. Oberaargauer Brass Band (Christoph Luchsinger): 158/158 = 316
10. Liberty Brass Band Ostschweiz (Andreas Koller): 156/160 = 316

Best March: Brass Band 13 Etoiles (James Gourlay)
Best Own Choice: Brass Band Burgermusik Luzern (Michael Bach)



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November 19 • The all conquering Norwegians of Eikanger become the Brass in Concert champions.


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November 19 • Clackmannan claims the Scottish Challenge Shield honours with a triumphant performance in Perth.


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November 17 • The Sage Gateshead will host two days of world class brass band talent this weekend at the Brass in Concert Championship festival.


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November 17 • The successful musical partnership between conductor Ryan Watkins and Trinity Girls Band has come to an end.


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


Chinnor Silver

November 20 • Despite winning the 2nd section at the GBBA contest we still need a Bb BASS to complete our line up. Good but realistic book of concerts and concerts planned.. We have well attended rehearsals on a Wednesday in our own bandroom.


Hucknall & Linby Brass

November 20 • Hucknall and Linby Band - 2nd section- Require a front row cornet player. We rehearse Thursdays 7.30 -9.30 in Hucknall, Nottingham. With great transport links to the city centre and the universities.


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.


Ian Holmes

BA (hons), PGDip (RCM), ARCM, ALCM
Conductor, piano accompanist and educator