The first Foden's Youth Festival was recently held at Sandbach School, where the National Champion played host to the Foden's Youth, Foden's Junior, Lions Junior and Stockport School Band's.
The bands performed a 30-minute own-choice programme in a friendly non-competitive atmosphere, with each band receiving constructive written remarks from trainee adjudicator Jonathan Bates in what was an innovative link by Foden's to the Association of Brass Band Adjudicators.
The initiative formed part of Foden's successful Arts Council England 'Grants for the Arts' application for a 'Three Year Strategic Music and Audience Development Plan', and during the enjoyable day hot and cold food was provided alongside a number of trade stands attractions from including The King's Division, Elliot Brass, Bsharp cleaning products, Brass Toff repairs and Foden's Heritage.
During the dinner break Foden's 'Magician in Residence' Nat Martin provided a fantastic magic show to entertain the young performers, whilst a number of Foden's stars held masterclass sessions with performers before a Gala Concert.
Festival co-ordinator Mark Wilkinson told 4BR: "We would like to thank the bands who supported our event as well as the numerous trade stands and advertisers.
The inspiration was to encourage youth bands to work and support each other as well as providing a fun and friendly event without any competitive pressures — something which we believe was achieved with great success.
The inspiration was to encourage youth bands to work and support each other as well as providing a fun and friendly event without any competitive pressures — something which we believe was achieved with great successMark Wilkinson
He added: "The non competitive festival is the next stage in our Youth Development Programme which already includes running our own Youth and Junior Bands, annual Solo Contest as well as partnerships and coaching days with various local Youth Bands, Royal Northern College of Music and the Love Music Trust."