facebook twitter rss vimeo shop label support us

*
banner

Black Dyke Festival

Conductors: Prof Nicholas Childs, Brett Baker, Richard Marshall
Featuring: Darius Battiwalla (organ); Les Neish (tuba)
Leeds Town Hall
Sunday 3rd June

The continued success of the annual Black Dyke Festival was both seen as well as emphatically heard on a sultry Sunday afternoon at a packed Leeds Town Hall.

After a day of Besson sponsored masterclass and workshop features led by Prof Nicholas Childs and the stars of the Queensbury band, the event was rounded off by the cross-Pennine ranks of Black Dyke, Armthorpe Elmfield, City of Bradford, BD1 Brass, Delph and Friezland, whilst the MDs Welsh roots were represented by the Royal Buckley Band.

Sparkling renditions

There was something for everyone to enjoy - from the easy listening nostalgia of ‘The Dambusters’ march and a ‘James Bond’ set to ‘Them Basses’ and ‘Mack the Knife’.

Les Neish was the brilliant guest soloist with sparkling renditions of ‘Quicksilver’ and ‘Hora Staccato’ that not even Jascha Heifetz in his prime could have bettered.

The band’s long term commitment to inspiring the next generation of young playing talent was amply displayed by the Yorkshire Youth Band giving mature renditions of ‘Starlight’ (conducted by Brett Baker) and Philip Harper's 'Olympus' (led by Richard Marshall).

Gloriously engaging

Meanwhile, Prof Childs revved up Black Dyke with a swaggering ‘Liberty Bell’ and a lightening-mode ‘Ruslan and Lyudmila’, whilst the substantive centrepiece was provided by the world premiere of Philip Wilby’s gloriously engaging ‘Cinema’. 

Darius Battiwalla played the mammoth Town Hall organ with a delicacy of touch that drew on an increasingly passionate inspiration that chattered with intricate memory recalls of long lost dialogue and sepia tinted vistas of colour and sound (the finale seeing the cornet section delivering the ‘Last Post’) - all held together by the touching sense of the passing of time.

Funded by Arts Council England, it paid homage to the early years of an art form whose film reel roots were very much in the heartland of Yorkshire (1888 in fact).

Darius Battiwalla played the mammoth Town Hall organ with a delicacy of touch that drew on an increasingly passionate inspiration that chattered with intricate memory recalls of long lost dialogue and sepia tinted vistas of colour and sound (the finale seeing the cornet section delivering the ‘Last Post’) - all held together by the touching sense of the passing of time.

It held the audience spellbound – whilst the classic finale of ‘Pines of Rome’ and the obligatory encore, 'I'll Walk with God' simply rounded off an afternoon of outstanding musical entertainment.

Malcolm Wood 

Support us for less than a cup of coffee...

4BR wants to ensure that the brass band movement remains vibrant and relevant. We also want to be able to question, challenge and critically examine those who run and play in it, producing high quality journalism that informs as well as entertains our readers.

So if like us you value a strong, independent perspective on the brass band world - then why not consider becoming a supporter and help make our future and that of a burgeoning brass band movement more secure.

So one less cappuccino then?

Support us    



Woodfalls Band - Risca Male Voice Choir

Saturday 23 March • St Mary's Church Andover SP10 1ER


Grimethorpe Colliery Band -

Saturday 23 March • Wakefield Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, Wakefield WF1 2TE


Foden's Band - Matt Ford - Newtown, Powys

Saturday 23 March • The Hafren Theatre, Newtown, Powys SY16 4HU


Black Dyke Band - Victoria Hall

Saturday 23 March • The Victoria Hall, Knowsley Street, Bolton BL1 2AS


Grimethorpe Colliery Band -

Sunday 24 March • Kettering Lighthouse Theatre. Thurston Drive, Kettering NN15 6PB


Welwyn Garden City Band

March 24 • We are a friendly & sociable Third Section Band with an exciting and varied summer season ahead of us. We have an immediate vacancy for a SOLO TROMBONE player. Our MD is Duncan Wilson.


The Tilbury Band

March 24 • In our hundredth year, The Tilbury Band is currently seeking cornet players and percussionists to bring our band back to full capacity. Could this be you? A friendly 2nd section band, we rehearse on a Wednesday and Sunday evening in our Hall in Tilbury.


Freckleton Band

March 24 • We have a vacancy for a 2nd trombone player, although the solo trombone position would be available to the right person. The band are currently competing in the Championship section and have a balanced concert and contest programme.


Phillip Littlemore

GGSM, AoBBA Member
Conductor, Band Trainer, Adjudicator, Arranger, Teacher and Publisher