The British Army Brass Band has been putting the final Wilby touches to its preparation for its special 70th birthday celebration concert in honour of the composer in Harrogate this evening (Thursday 11th -7.30pm).
The event at St Peter's Church of England offers the unique opportunity to enjoy the cream of British Army brass banding talent directed by Capt Brenden Wheeler, Director of Music of The Band of the Royal Armoured Corps performing music made famous in the civilian brass banding world.
To help the musical troops at rehearsals this week at Catterick Garrison, Prof Wilby brought along his original scores to two of the iconic works that will be featured — 'Masquerade' and 'Revelation'.
Capt Brenden Wheeler told 4BR: "It's been an honour to work with Prof Wilby in this way and to gain extra insight into these two incredible works. They remain immense challenges to musicians, but so satisfying to perform. We are sure the audience will enjoy hearing them again."
Capt Wheeler admitted that he was fortunate that the British Army Brass Band included a number of musicians that have maintained close links to the elite level of the civilian banding world, as players are given the time to perform with the likes of Cory, Desford Colliery, Leyland, Flowers and Aldbourne, as well as other bands.
It's been an honour to work with Prof Wilby in this way and to gain extra insight into these two incredible works. They remain immense challenges, but so satisfying to perform. We are sure the audience will enjoy hearing them againCapt Brenden Wheeler
A band spokesperson added: "This is what makes the British Army Brass Band unique — that vital connection to the banding world which enables our musicians to build a professional Army career and enjoy a fulfilling banding commitment at the highest level if they wish."
That will be shown with Cory' star tenor horn player and Army Musician Ailsa Russell performing his 'Fantasie Concertante', whilst the band will also feature Prof Wilby's 'Pilgrims Progress' (with the composer on organ), his thrilling 'Scipio Fanfare & Fugue' and his wonderful setting of 'The Day Thou Gavest'.
The British Army Brass Band
St Peter's Church
Thursday 11th April (7.30pm)