National Finals 2018 Results and Report

A “free ride” turned into a celebration for the senior band as they finished 7th in the First Section National Finals.

The afternoon began with the usual pre-contest rehearsal: “Vastly experienced MD” Steve reminded the band that they were to enjoy the occasion, regardless of the result – the band have had a tough few months, and should recognise that qualifying for the finals was prize enough – “there’s hundreds, maybe thousands, of players that will never play in the national finals”.

Despite the challenges of the venue and the stage, the band put in a solid performance, full of musicality, and were rewarded with one of the best results in their history.

Senior Band – First Section

Test Piece: King Arthur — Scenes from a Radio Drama (Benjamin Britten arr. Paul Hindmarsh)
Adjudicators: Alan Bourne, David Hirst, John Maines

1. Oldham Band (Lees) (John Collins)
2. Staffordshire (Leigh Baker)
3. Johnstone (Martin Ramsay)
4. Amersham (Paul Fisher)
5. Dunaskin Doon (Chris Bradley)
6. Ebbw Valley (Gareth Ritter)
7. Chalford (Steve Tubb)
8. Sandhurst Silver (David Johnson)
9. Enderby (Simon Oates)
10. Freckleton (Paul Dalton)
11. Bournemouth Concert Brass (Howard J Evans)
12. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)
13. Harrogate (Dean Jones)
14. Foresters Brass (John Davis)
15. Burry Port Town (Gareth Robinson)
16. Houghton Brass (Lee Morris)
17. Strata Brass (Jonathan Bates)

Overture: Good fanfares. Timp not entirely rhythmic and tempo pushes. 30 Eb tuning in troms & cornets. Tempo causes ensemble issues. Unlucky Euph! 53 well done mutes. [E] doesn’t work – tempo! 85 unclear semiquavers. Poor ensemble to end.
Gallahad: Opening a little uncertain. Timp is too loud at [I] Cornet and Flugel need to balance at Andante. Sop not entirely comfortable. Flugel does well into 146. Tuning issues at high G’s. Tuning in horns 155 is poor
Death: Dynamics build well but tuning in chords is not secure. Tempo at [Q] is very fast – difficult to hear and semiquavers scramble. 316 balance? 326 scrappy [U] -> is frantic and loses structure. 349 tuning poor.[W] is effective and cornets play well. Eb bass shapes well. 370 poor tuning Cornets/flug. Brave attempt from horn. Some unlucky splits.

A mixed performance today – some great contributions but tempo made some things difficult. Intonation and tuning were not always secure. Thank you.

 

Clean opening but horns sound somewhat rushed. Euph does well just the odd slip [E] is good. Good detail at [F] It sounds a little rushed to end
Gallahad: Good to open [I] Cornets link up well. One or two uncomfortable moments in Andante but this improves [K] is not together. Some intonation to end.
Death of Arthur: A bit heavy to start but a good build to [Q] [S] Be careful perc, not to overshadow the detail. From [U] I don’t hear a lot of contrast dynamically. [V] Intonation in lower band. [W] some nice cornet work, well done Eb bass. Nice horn sound. Some slips in top of band spoil. Moves to a solid end.

Overall some decent playing but could have been more dynamically varied. Thanks.

 

I. A confident opening – not all detail is clear from bar 7 and ensemble is not always precise. Allegro a good tempo but not all the technical challenges are met.
II. Good to open and fairly well in tune and [I] is effective. Andante Comodo – well done solo lines [J] Well done soprano and a good attempt at the dynamics in 146. Andante Moderato – well played. [K] is controlled – good to close
IV. [Q} a bright tempo but the detail is heard [S} well done and good approach to [T] There is some spirited playing and there is good ensemble cohesion. Good approach to the moderato. Well done to the end.

Some good sounds and ensemble had a sense of purpose. Good solo lines and percussion effects. Well done.

Summer Concert 2018 Review

From Strauss to Elgar, Puccini to Parry, Chalford Band served up a Proms inspired treat for a good-humoured Subscription Rooms audience already basking in 30 degrees heat and a world cup quarterfinal victory for England.

Right from the start MD Steve Tubb had the audience involved, stomping and chinking wine glasses in rhythm with Strauss’ Radetsky march.  The next item was a LNOTP stalwart, Sparke’s arrangement “Jerusalem”, first used by the band at a WI concert in May, some of whom were in the audience.

The next item was a bit of mystery, with Steve vs. Kelly – Steve admitted it was the first time he’d conducted it in public and likely to be the last – he invited 2nd horn Kelly Brazneill to explain why she always badgered Steve to play it – the audience got to choose whether it was consigned to public burning or another outing. Everyone was transported back to 1977 as  “The Floral Dance” got one of the biggest cheers of the night.

The combined band set closed with another Proms classic, “Fantasy on British Sea Songs”.

The Youth band started the next set with Fernie’s “Starlight”, followed by “Love Changes Everything”.  A great sound from the band that came 3rd in the National Youth Brass Band Championships.  More classical influence with “Sicilliano”, before they were joined on stage by the Junior band – the first time ever Youth & Junior bands had combined.

The Youth band then left the stage to the “tiddlers” & “stars of the show” as Steve introduced them. Admirably prepared by Bev Godwin, they performed “Pastime with Good Company” and “La Cucaracha”.

Then the Senior band took to the stage, starting with Peter Graham’s “A London Celebration”.  Emily Godwin stood up for the only solo item of the night, “Nessum Dorma” by Puccini – and she absolutely “smashed it”!!! The hypnotic “Gota” followed, and then the trombones showed their stuff with “Dem Bones”, chosen to recognise 70 years since the birth of the NHS. The pace slowed with  “Nimrod” from the Enigma Variations, before the band ended their set with the increasingly upbeat “Kalinka”, a nod to the World Cup in Russia.

After a brief break for the raffle, all players were back on stage, for a wartime singalong, “Bless ‘Em ‘All” by Gavin Somerset, to mark 100 years since the end of WW1.  You can’t have a Last night of the Proms concert without “Land of Hope & Glory”, so that was next, with the backdrop of all the flags etc. made during the concert.

After the prize for the best dressed table was given out, an encore was demanded, so time for another Proms staple, “The Hornpipe” (despite table 9 claiming there was a “hornpipe ban” in place”!).  That wasn’t enough for the audience, so the concert concluded with another rendition of “Land of Hope & Glory”.

The band would like to thank all the parents and other volunteers that helped to make the concert a success – from the table layers, flower arrangers, decoration makers, cheese cutters etc, and to all the players, especially the younger ones, for the long hot rehearsals.

(Answers to the Crossword are here)


Summer Concert Tickets

CHALFORD BAND SUMMER CONCERT 2018

This year’s Summer Concert is on Saturday 7th July 2018 at 7:30 pm in the Subscription Rooms, Stroud.

Tickets are £12.50 each in the main hall (which includes food and drink).

Seating in the main hall is at tables of ten people. (We formulate a seating plan. Please let us know if there are others who you would like to share a table with and we will try to accommodate this if possible).

PLEASE NOTE – TICKETS WILL BE SOLD AS FOLLOWS:

The tickets tend to sell out very quickly! To make it fair we have, again, decided to allocate two tickets per family that has players in the band.

If you would like to claim your two tickets please confirm this with Andy Godwin by Friday 1st June 2018 and provide payment at the same time. Please make cheques payable to ‘Chalford Band’.

Tickets will then go on general release on Saturday 2nd June 2018 on a first come first served basis. (N.B. – Those people who have already had two tickets are welcome to apply for additional tickets on this date if needed).

N.B: If you have not requested and paid for your allocated tickets by Friday 1st June, we will assume you don’t need them and offer them for general sale.

You can see Andy at rehearsals or you can contact him as follows:

Home Tel: 01453 752774
Mobile: 07722 931929
Email: tickets@chalfordband.co.uk

2018 Annual General Meeting

The 2018 AGM will be held at the band room on 24th May @7:45pm
Agenda

1. Apologies
2. Minutes of 2017 AGM
3. Matters arising from those minutes
4. Chairman’s Report
5. Musical Director’s Report
6. Treasurer’s report
7. Subscriptions for 2018/2019
8. Election of Officers
9. Any other business

Youth band 3rd at National Championships

Chalford Youth Band were placed 3rd in the Junior section of the national brass band championships at Warwick Arts Centre.  For the third year in a row they won the best instumentalist award!

Result:
Junior Section:
Adjudicators: Martin Heartfield and Ben Richeton

Own-choice programme not exceeding 15 minutes playing time which must include at least one original piece of music composed for brass band and two verses of a hymn tune from the Red Hymn Book

1. Wardle Academy Junior Band (Lee Rigg) (Gold Award)
2. Beaumaris Band (Bethan Lowri) (Gold Award)
3. Chalford Youth Band (Steve Tubb) (Silver Award)

Silver Award:
Fred Longworth High School (Helen Robinson)
Lions Junior Brass Band (Tom Hancock)

Bronze Award:
Dobcross Youth Band (Matt Hindle)
Elland Junior Band (Samantha Harrison)
Hawkley Hall High School (Steven Cavanagh)
Soundhouse Youth Brass Plymouth (Gary Thompson)

Merit Award:
Macclesfield Junior Brass Band (Tim Grindey)
Stockport Schools Intermediate Brass Band (Tom Ridgley)
Tewit Youth Intermediate Band (Dave Dunn-Birch)

Best Instrumentalist: Flugel (Chalford Youth)

Starlight:
Confident opening, lots of detail and attention to the score! Well done M.D.
Good Euphs
B – good dynamic contrast. Careful with B.row tuning.
D – More ff please – solo cornet semis not heard.
F – more ‘marc’ please.
Ending could be stronger to show fff contrast.
Great opener.

Aranjuez:
Good to open. Watch tuning in Sop!
Fabulous sound from the soloist!
You play very musically. I am sitting and enjoying this!
Careful with cornet tuning in ‘tutti’ sections.
G – more < to pause please.
Bravo young lady!! You have a great future!

Ring, Ring:
Good tempo and style!
A – careful with unison tuning in cornets.
C – lots of energy!
Keep the bass line more marcato please.
D/S – lots of energy still and some great sounds.
V. enjoyable thank you.

Hymn:
V.1. Good balance + contrast – phrase ends are tidy.
V.2. – not as secure to open – but recovers to a controlled close

Get Happy:
Good opening – well done B.row, careful not to rush.
D – well done Sop!
All soloists do well! Careful with rhythmical accuracy.

Lots of fun and energy to the end.

Overall a great programme, EXCELLENT Soloist. Well played + thank you.
MARTIN HEARTFIELD
——
Starlight:
Very effective fp dynamics! The first C not quite in tune but recovers swiftly.
B – middle + lower end great rhythm playing.
C – Lovely sop.
F – Running semiquavers work fantastically!
Great energy to start the programme!

Aranjuez:
Dramatic opening – Watch the tuning 2 bars before B.
B – Flugel horn. What a warm sound. Expressive playing and tuning is spot on!
E – Wow! ff offers wonderful contrast. Watch out for accidentals cornets.
Soloist – Take more time in the end. But overall one word: fantastic.

Ring, Ring:
With no transition – complete change of character. Such positive vibes from this. Clapping enhances this! Dynamics mostly respected. Loved it.

Hymn:
This is just lovely. There is a real sense of one-ness in this. Tuning is great and every player follows the conductor’s indications in terms of dynamics and phrasing!

Get Happy:
This is a little looser in terms of ensemble playing but the atmosphere is great.
D – Sop great, same with Solo Cornets at F then Trombones.

Fantastic performance, musically, and the ensemble playing was near faultless. Great programme too, well done band and MD.
BEN RICHETON

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