In an innovative move aimed at reinforcing a crucial link between community youth banding and the higher education sector, the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire (RBC) has announced that the multi-award winning Youth Brass 2000 Band will become its first Youth Band in Residence.
The current British Open Youth at the Guild Champion and former European, National Youth, Butlins Mineworkers Festival, BrassFest UK Entertainment and Action Medical Research title holders has gained a hugely respected reputation for its musical excellence since its formation in 1989.
Under the inspirational direction of conductor Chris Jeans they have not only been highly successful on the contest stage, but have also undertaken numerous tours, concert performances and recordings.
The band has also led the way in the musical development of countless youngsters, with a number going on to enjoy highly successful professional musical careers.
From Spring 2021, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Brass Band course students under the leadership of Ian Porthouse will work alongside players from Youth Brass 2000 helping them in their ongoing musical development.
The link will also include sharing a concert platform with the band as well as exploring further links with the Conservatoire's senior Band in Residence, Welsh champion, Tredegar.
Speaking about the initiative, Amos Miller, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire Head of Brass told 4BR: "We believe this is the first time that a UK conservatoire has developed a relationship like this with a youth band, and it will be an exciting addition to our already acclaimed residency association with Tredegar Band.
Youth Brass 2000 has been a hotbed for brilliant emerging talent for many years and I am in awe of the fact that they have had all their amazing success with a "no-audition"policy.
This for me is such a clear demonstration of the value of peer to peer learning in music, and how important it is for young players to see and hear excellence from an early stage."
He added: "We hope that this will be an inspirational opportunity for both sets of young people: our students can hone their pedagogical and mentoring skills, and the Youth Brass 2000 players will be able to be inspired at first hand by conservatoire life."
In response, Youth Brass 2000 Musical Director, Chris Jeans told 4BR: "This is fantastic news for the Youth Brass 2000 organisation.
It's also provides a hallmark of recognition for the work so many people have done over the years in helping create a youth band that prides itself on providing youngsters with every opportunity to start a life time involvement in music.
I'm particularly looking forward to working with Amos Miller and Ian Porthouse. Ian is a very inspirational musician and conductor so to have him as their mentor can only be a positive addition to the development of our youngsters as musicians."
It also provides a hallmark of recognition for the work so many people have done over the years in helping create a youth band that prides itself on providing youngsters with every opportunity to start a life time involvement in musicChris Jeans
Meanwhile, Ian added. "This is great news for everyone concerned — the youngsters, the conservatoire students and the bands.
I'm sure we can build something of lasting value here with this partnership, one which will also be enhanced by the closer links we hope to explore between Youth Brass 2000 and Tredegar."
The Conservatoire will be holding an Open Day in January.
To find out more go to: https://www.bcu.ac.uk/conservatoire/about-us/open-days/21-january-2021