Weston-super-Mare 45th Annual Brass Band Contest
A beautiful sunny morning promised a lovely day of brass bands competing against each other. A final run-through at 11.30am for the City of Bristol Brass Band was marred only by an accident on the M5 delaying one player and another player conducting his band in the contest at the same time as the warm-up. Spirits were good; the band was very well prepared, having chosen a particularly difficult testpiece - James Curnow's Brass Metamorphosis.
After a little confusion with the draw, it was established that we were to play last. In an original line-up of eight bands, only six were now competing.
The wait is always the worst part, but eventually we were called in to register. With all final adjustments made, we walked onto the stage, settled into our seats and played the piece. The inevitable few slips were made, but overall it was not a bad performance from anybody. The results were not to be announced until after the joint First / Championship section had played (another eight bands), so most of the band filed off to the pub for food and refreshments.
At the results, our adjudicator, David Thornton, talked about the balance and, in particular, tailoring the performance to the venue to let the detail come through.
The Best Euphonium Tophy was awarded to St. Keverne
Third Prize: Pendennis
Second Prize: AW Parker (Drybrook)
First Prize: St. Keverne
We came fifth, so a very disappointing result.
Opening: Bold opening. Let the semiquavers come through in the balance, please. (25) nice dynamic gestures. Keep the solo lines as smooth as possible when called for. Var. I - This is a little frantic in tempo and ensemble. Control and clarity - especially in a hall like this. Var. II - Bass a beat late? Some good playing in this exposed music - well done flug and horn. (163) slight mis-pitches from soloist. (179) - well done euph on a really tricky solo - not quite 100% - but very near. Var. III - Snare drum much too loud - need to hear the melody. Again - we lose the semi work in the balance. Keep the tempo held, if it races we lose the virtuoso nature of the playing. Some good technique shown here. Var. IV - Nice horn playing - good legato line. (359) - Well done BBb! Careful of tuning in the cornet accomp here. (371) - some nerves showing here in the exposed writing. Var. V - S.D. a little loud again. Watch balance. (425) - tenuto in euph?