It was the buzz that I noticed first – felt, more than anything. The Royal Northern College of Music was really, really busy – whole bands chattering excitedly as they were led backstage, families checking children and belongings, supporters buying programmes, seeing old friends, finding colleagues, mumbles, and shouts and toots and parps…until I entered the halls.
Immediately a sense of reverence, of anticipation, of suspense, surrounded us. When the young bands played, the audience- both halls filled to the rafters- were enthralled and stunned by the vibrancy, sound, skill and musicality of the performances, whether they were by tinies playing jolly Disney in fancy dress, or serious young adults entrancing the audience with stunning soundscapes.
2013 was my first experience of youth brass banding since I was a youth player myself, and the National Youth Brass Band Championships were the finest re-introduction I could have wished for.
It is with a great sense of anticipation that I look forward to this Sunday’s Championships, taking place this year in the Maxwell and Peel Halls of the University of Salford. The contest runs in both halls simultaneously, beginning at around 9.00 and finishing at 6.00pm. A long day of musical joy and inspiration, a day to give any brass player or banding volunteer an immense boost that reminds us just why we do this and what it’s all about. Here’s to the buzz!
Follow the National Youth Brass Band Championship buzz on Twitter via the hashtag #futurebrass
For more details, see this informative article from our friends at www.4barsrest.com