Our Musical Youth

Last Sunday was this year's Brass Bands England National Youth Brass Band Championships in the inspirational venue of the Royal Northern College of Music. There was a great buzz, an atmosphere of busy music-making, chattering, laughing, listening. The audience were wowed by the brilliance of each performance - our young players are an amazing force; pure, undiluted musical energy. It's humbling that as band members and players, and together with Brass Bands England, there is a chance to make a difference, to offer to today’s young musicians chances to perform in enthralling spaces, chance to learn, grow, and be part of our movement. Many music hub bands are supporting youth music, and huge numbers of bands - more than ever before?? - are stepping up to fill the player gap by supporting, developing and starting youth and training bands. At the National Youth Championships we were reminded once again of the huge amounts of effort  put by parents, teachers, leaders and families into getting band members to rehearsals and concerts, into fund-raising efforts and ironing uniforms, into musical development and practicing and working together. A group of adult  players were overheard recently reminiscing  about the sunshine-filled, mind-expanding, world-opening adventures they had with their youth band. They discussed just how much was learned about life from these musical endeavours, and how the support of parents and key adults in keeping those bands afloat and  thriving was an integral part of the structure of their band. In celebration of those fabulous adults and young musicians who make days like last Sunday such a success, here are simple ways we can all thank or help our youth bands: Next time you see a poster or a Facebook event from your local youth band, go along. Enjoy their performance. Drop a donation or offer some time. Connect them with your boss for a team to decorate the band room, or introduce them to your firm’s print social media expert for some free advice. Do what you can.