Creating a buzz at the National Youth Championships

Issue 5965

All the fun of the big event at Warwick University

BBC success for Isobel Daws and Thomas Nielsen

European stage awaits in Utrecht

Senior Cup LIVE!

Saturday 12 May, 2018

The Senior Cup

Test-piece: Diadem of Gold (G. Bailey arr. Frank Wright)

Draws: 9.45am and 1.00pm

Commences: 10.45am

Kenny Crookston reporting

In the BB Frame

1. Redbridge (Richard Ward)

2. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)

3. St. Dennis (Darren Hawken)

4. Ratby Co-operative (Mareika Gray)

5. Oldham Band (Lees) (John Collins)

6. Aveley and Newham (Alan Duguid)

N.B. NOT the official result!

 

Results

1. Oldham Band (Lees) (John Collins)
2. St. Dennis (Darren Hawken)
3. Redbridge (Richard Ward)
4. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)
5. Hatfield (Stan Lippeatt)
6. Yorkshire Imperial Urquhart Travel (Jack Capstaff) 
7. Ratby Co-operative (Mareika Gray)
8. Blackburn and Darwen (Jonathan Bates)
9. Lydbrook (Glyn Williams)
10. TCTC Group (Jef Sparkes) 
11. Aveley and Newham (Alan Duguid)
12. Dalmellington (Richard Evans)
13. Northop Silver (John Doyle)
14. Newtongrange Silver (Anne Crookston)
15. Goodwick Brass (Matthew Jenkins)
16. Kingdom Brass (Ian Porthouse)
17. Jackfield (Simon Platford)
18. Burry Port Town (Gareth Robinson)
19. Staffordshire (Jonathan Pippen)
20. Unite the Union (City of Sheffield) (John Roberts)

Best soloist: Ben Richeton, soprano cornet, Oldham (Lees)

 

16:55 - An interesting day at the office that proved that the good old ones can still cause huge problems for today's bands. No one really nailed it from start to finish but there were some very good readings including from our top three - Redbridge, Skelmanthorpe and St. Dennis. We could be in for a surprise though!

 

Results will be announced in the Pavilion Theatre

 

20. Northop Silver (John Doyle)
Opening lacks definition and movement. Some very good ensemble follows. The tempo seems to increase as the movement progresses and the transition into the allegro has some sticky moments. Allegro zips along apace and again it seems to be racing within the tempo at times, leading to some rather untidy bars. Lovely cornet in the andante and the soprano digs deep to deliver the high-wire part. Final section works better until the ensemble begins to unwind slightly. Perhaps one that got away today…

 

19. Lydbrook (Glyn Williams)
Quite an individual approach to some parts of the opening movement. For the most part, though, it was all there to be heard. Allegro has a nice light style but yet again the intricate detail is proving difficult today. Lovely cornet sound at the start of andante and soprano handles the high-wire solo with ease. Some scrappy moments in the final allegro will also cost, but although the error count has been high overall, there has also been a lot to like about this one.

 

18. Dalmellington (Richard Evans)
Confident opening may just be more robust than the judges are looking for, but there is no lack of energy and it all seems to be going in. Ensemble suffers a serious mishap as it runs into allegro and it takes a few bars to recover. Allegro is full of spirit, but it is rather ‘full on’ in style, making it difficult to lift when necessary. Cornet and soprano are among the best we’ve heard in andante. Again the heavy-handedness sometimes makes it difficult to appreciate the quality. Final section is strong and robust, but again perhaps a little bit too much so. This one could divide opinion, but for us it was just a bit over the top too often.

 

17. Staffordshire (Jonathan Pippen)
Opening section recovers well from some insecure sounds near the start. Intonation and ensemble still suffer occasional lapses, but we like the style and energy of the allegro. Unfortunately it doesn’t maintain quality all the way through and further slips occur throughout the andante, which may have benefitted from a bit less speed at times. Great spirit in the final movement, but we think there has just been too many slips in this one today.

 

16. Goodwick Brass (Matthew Jenkins)
Opening ensemble not as tight as most today and the andante struggles to remain cohesive throughout. Looseness continues as allegro gets underway and it never really settles before the following andante. Nice playing from soloists (a collective wrong one?) and although this is probably the band at its best it still has regular lapses. Final allegro has the right shape but is again light on accuracy. A good effort but too many flaws to do well today.

 

15. Oldham Band (Lees) (John Collins)
Detached style in the opening doesn’t work for us but soprano is the best we’ve heard so far and the ensemble work in the opening movement is very high-class (we love the bass sound…). Allegro has energy and a cornet / soprano duo that makes it seem effortless. Animated section is all there and well-balanced and it almost leads into the andante tidily. Languid cornet hands over to the superb soprano and it builds well (did we hear a collective wrong note though?) through to the climax. We’re not entirely sure that some aspects of style come off through the andante, and there is a short loss of the leading line in the return to the allegro. A very good show overall with some fabulous individual playing.

 

14. Burry Port Town (Gareth Robinson)
Quite untidy in the opening bars, with individual errors and loose ensemble going on to impact heavily on the overall andante. Untidiness continues in allegro. There is no lack of commitment from band and conductor, but tuning and ensemble continue to be problematic. Andante sees the band suffer from further errors, although when it does remain tidy the overall sound is very good. More untidiness at the start of the final section of a performance that never really recovered from an untidy start.

 

13. Hatfield (Stan Lippeatt)
Robust in style to open and it flows along well if just a bit louder overall than we might expect. Similarly, the allegro is all in good shape while the air of heavy-handedness continues. Some good playing all round though and the cornet and soprano both add a lot to the andante. Like many today there are small flaws at fairly regular intervals throughout the andante, but this has been better than most. Allegro has an air of confidence and it builds to a strong finale. Certainly one to watch, if a bit on the heavy side at times.

 

12. Newtongrange Silver (Anne Crookston)
Well-balanced opening suffers from some minor insecurity. Middle band intonation (and some notation) is a factor as it progresses, but the basses come over very well through the intricate section. Opening of allegro lacks detail in the cornets. Soprano is right on it and the melodic line is passed around the band very well. Again the intonation is noticeable as it transitions into andante, where individual insecurity again detracts from the overall picture. Impressive sounds in the climax to the andante but the allegro has too many untidy contributions for this to figure strongly.

 

11. Blackburn and Darwen (Jonathan Bates)
Back up and running after a break here and it’s a clean start from B&D. We like the shape and attention to detail, but there is a feeling that it is starting to gather slightly more momentum than may have originally been intended. Allegro also has an over-riding feeling of urgency and the ensemble soon becomes rather untidy and unfocused. We like the approach to the andante (great work soprano!) and the ebb and flow of the music really comes across well, despite occasional clips. Urgent approach returns in the final section. A good show overall, but one that may have benefitted from a bit more time and less urgency.

 

10. TCTC Group (Jef Sparkes) 

Untidy opening bars and intonation isn’t quite spot on. The rest of the opening section is fairly tidy, but it seems to lack a bit of forward motion at times. Again there are a few untidy moments as the allegro gets going and although it is relatively clean overall it does lack a bit of dynamic impact when the meaty part arrives. Lovely solo cornet gets the andante off to a good start. Not everything that follows is quite as polished, though, and the tuning suffers later. Final section holds together well to finish an accomplished performance that some very good qualities.

 

9. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)

A well-shaped opening and the band attempts all the dynamics, almost with 100% accuracy in ensemble. Great work also in the dance-like allegro and the melody is passed around the band in perfect balance. Could have been stronger when the real animated material arrived, but this is developing into a good show in the context of the day. Andante is almost as tidy as we have heard and again we like the approach to dynamics. Final allegro feels rather pacy but nearly everything comes across clearly. We don’t think this one will be far away.

 

8. Aveley and Newham (Alan Duguid)
A very detached style in the opening and we’re not sure it works. Excellent quiet playing follows though, and the opening movement develops well, the occasional individual and section error aside. Allegro has a dance-like feeling and the soprano is one of the best so far. It does feel a bit light in the cornets when it gets more animated, however. We like the approach in andante and most of it is well delivered. The individual error count does start to rack up, but much of the final section was very well played. A lot to credit in this one but it may just have had too many scruffy moments to last the pace today.

 

7. Unite the Union (City of Sheffield) (John Roberts)
Another robust opening, although a bit more robust than we’ve heard so far in places. Allegro is pretty tidy but, again, balance-wise it is less successful with the soprano very dominant throughout. This continues in the andante, despite much other good work around the stand. The overall band sound has a lot of quality, especially at the bottom end and the main tune is excellent. Allegro again feels unbalanced. Overall a band that could certainly play Diadem of Gold but balance issues became very distracting.

 

6. Kingdom Brass (Ian Porthouse)
Solid opening and the ensemble is clean most of the way through the opening section. Balance-wise it feels top-heavy at times, but solo work is generally good (unlucky euphonium…). Allegro has an appropriate amount of ‘menace’ when required but a lot of the earlier intricate work was less successful. Andante feels quite heavy-handed at times but again there is a lot of good work among the less well-delivered moments. A robust final section to a performance that had a lot to offer but just felt unrefined at times.

 

5. Ratby Co-operative (Mareika Gray)
All safe in the opening and the ensemble is all in good shape throughout, although some upper sounds are very dominant. Allegro starts well; there are a few sticky individual moments but it holds its shape well and we like the overall impact created through excellent dynamics. Some excellent solo work in andante but again the soprano perhaps dominates just a tad too much at times. Climactic melody perhaps lacking in some impact. Not the tidiest of allegros we’ve heard but there is a lot to like about this overall.

 

4. Redbridge (Richard Ward)
Well-measured opening and the soprano is pristine at the top. Secure ensemble throughout the opening section and dynamics are all well observed, although there are minor inaccuracies. Allegro moderato gets off to a less tidy start (the tempo is rocking along) and although there is plenty of excellent playing there are occasional individual errors. Quality oozes in andante affetuoso (cornet and soprano!) and the attention to detail is noticeable. We love the attempt to play properly quiet - even if it wasn’t 100% in delivery. Perhaps just lacking some commitment in the ‘big tune’… Allegro is again excellent. A very good performance overall - could be one to watch!

 

3. St. Dennis (Darren Hawken)
Solid opening with just the merest hint of insecurity and poor intonation, but it proceeds well through poco lento maestoso and the interplay between the basses and the upper band is excellent. Impressive euphonium! Allegro moderato just the right tempo for the band and the music and we like the dynamic contrasts. Just the occasional feeling of rushing but overall this has been better than we’ve heard so far through the animated section. Lots of good work also in the andante, although it isn’t entirely clean in all the solo lines. Good transition back into allegro where the ensemble is still in good shape. End builds up in energy nicely. A good show overall that had only minor errors, but we suspect there will be quite a few of those today!

 

2. Yorkshire Imperial Urquhart Travel (Jack Capstaff) 
More secure overall but there is a slight feeling of rushing at times within the ensemble and this continues through the bass end feature. Dynamic contrast is perhaps less than we would expect and the hurried feeling continues into allegro moderato which unfortunately becomes a bit chaotic towards the end. Andante affetuoso is again marked by too many individual errors. Stronger towards the end but the band will be disappointed overall.

 

1. Jackfield (Simon Platford)
Nice overall sound to open but it is a bit insecure at times. Flows well through the opening section and the bass end is right on top of it, but again the niggly errors creep in occasionally and this continues as it becomes more animated. Very well-chosen tempo and the ensemble copes well generally. Insecurity reappears in the slow movement, but again the music is well shaped. A strong ending to a well-read rendition but one that may just have suffered from too many sticky moments to last the pace today.

 

Draw

1. Jackfield (Simon Platford)

2. Yorkshire Imperial Urquhart Travel (Jack Capstaff) 

3. St. Dennis (Darren Hawken)

4. Redbridge (Richard Ward)

5. Ratby Co-operative (Mareika Gray)

6. Kingdom Brass (Ian Porthouse)

7. Unite the Union (City of Sheffield) (John Roberts)

8. Aveley and Newham (Alan Duguid)

9. Skelmanthorpe (Martin Heartfield)

10. TCTC Group (Jef Sparkes) 

11. Blackburn and Darwen (Jonathan Bates)

12. Newtongrange Silver (Anne Crookston)

13. Hatfield (Stan Lippeatt)

14. Burry Port Town (Gareth Robinson)

15. Oldham Band (Lees) (John Collins)

16. Goodwick Brass (Matthew Jenkins)

17. Staffordshire (Jonathan Pippen)

18. Dalmellington (Richard Evans)

19. Lydbrook (Glyn Williams)

20. Northop Silver (John Doyle)