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Take 5: Early season must see events

4BR picks out five must see events in January and February to consider putting in your weekend diaries...

  Five early season must see events to book into your weekend away diary

If you want to enjoy five very different musical experiences in the first two months of 2017 then why not put these in your diary and book yourself an away day trip.

1. Butlins Mineworkers Championship

Friday 13th January — Sunday 15th January

A contest weekend to blow away any lingering festive cobwebs of lethargy that may still be in your banding system — and not just because a cold wind is sure to chill your maracas as you make your way to the various resort venues to listen to the entertainment.

Once inside there is plenty to keep you warm — from the contests with their big prize jackpots to the late night revelry that will put a smile on your face. Still pack your thermal undies though…

More information:


2. RNCM Brass Band Festival

Friday 27th January — Sunday 29th January
RNCM, Manchester

The most important brass band showcase in Europe. Under the superb curatorship of Artistic Director Paul Hindmarsh, the RNCM Festival in Manchester continues to be the driving force behind pushing brass banding into the mainstream musical consciousness.

This year six top class bands will provide three days of music making that will see repertoire that numerous world premieres, superb featured soloists, timely retrospectives and a triple celebration of three outstanding composers for the medium.

More information:

Tickets: http:/­/­www.rncm.ac.uk
By Phone: 0161 907 5555

3. Norwegian National Championships

Friday 3rd February & Saturday 4th February

Everyone should take the opportunity to experience how the Norwegians celebrate, as well as showcase their National brass banding identity — at least once in their lifetime.

This is brass band contesting for the 21st century; vibrant, transparent and communal. It is also brilliantly organised. Forget the price of a pint of beer and fly in to Bergen to enjoy a National Championship like no other: The playing at all levels is a wonderful mix of the brilliant and at times the absolutely bonkers.

More information:


4. Action Medical Research Entertainment Championship

Winter Gardens
Sunday 12th February

If you are looking for a guaranteed brass band boost in the arm in 2017 then make sure you head to the famous Winter Gardens in Blackpool for this fantastic event.

The brilliant youth bands, who have been working their socks off all over the festive period, provide the type of entertainment that deserves to top the bill at this old mecca of fun and games — with an amazing mix of outstanding playing and eye-popping choreography.

More information:

For tickets, ring: 01253 625252

5. UniBrass Championships

Harrogate International Conference Centre
Saturday 18th February

Another huge dollop of brass band fun and feverish activity — and that's just on the contest stage. The best and the brightest give up their studies on everything from nuclear physics to media studies for a weekend to maintain their love for brass banding amid an atmosphere of keen, but friendly rivalry. The bar takings will be astronomical.

Superbly organised, and all topped off with a chance to work and hear the all conquering Cory Band in action (thankfully, they won't be competing).

More information:



Results: 2017 Scottish Challenge Shield

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


Gateshead prepares for the entertainers to arrive

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


Trinity Girls look for new lead

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

Your Logo Here

Big, little, large or small for Your Logo Here

November 17 • It doesn't matter about the size or number for Your Logo Here — just ask and we can keep everyone feeling part of your banding team...

Walsall Brass Band - Willenhall Singers

Saturday 18 November • Sneyd Communnity Centre, Vernon Way, Bloxwich, Walsall. WS3 2PA

Rushden Town Band -

Saturday 18 November • Park Rd Baptist Church, Rushden, Northamptonshire NN10 0RW

Contest: Brass in Concert

Saturday 18 November • Sage Gateshead, St Mary's Square, Gateshead NE28 2JR

Foden's Band - Morley Town Hall

Saturday 18 November • Queen Street, Morley LS27 9DY

Black Dyke Band - Waterford, Ireland

Saturday 18 November • Carriganore Arena, Waterford Institute of Technology Sports Campus tbc

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

Nicholas B. Hudson

Musician | Trombonist | Educator