LIVING THE DREAM - B&R bari star Amy Ewen chats to BB

Issue 6140

END OF THE ROAD - Jeans' tenure at GUS comes to a close

CONCERT REVIEW - Tredegar shines at Newbury Spring Festival

SADLY MISSED - Richard Evans laid to rest

BIDDING FAREWELL - Stephen Allen says goodbye to Lancaster British Brass Band

Fountain City fantastic under David's direction

Monday 9 May, 2022

The European Championships may have taken centre stage recently, but 100 or so miles north of Birmingham, Alabama , another continent was holding its annual brass band contest — The North American Brass Band Championships (NABBA) took place in Huntsville.

John Stirzaker was covering the event with and looks back on the action.


This small city, once a native American water hole, has historic ties to the American Civil War, and in 1958 it was the location of the first successful US launch of a space rocket before launches were moved to Florida. However, NASSA maintains its rocket development at the site, and it has helped this city prosper into Alabahma’s largest settlement. Key amongst this technological development was Wernher von Braun, a German scientist who was brought in by the Americans to develop the rockets used in the space programme. Von Braun proposed the building of the concert hall centre that now bears his name and was the new venue for the NABBA Championships.

The Brass Band of Huntsville hosted the event, and it and the organisers wondered how the two-year gap forced on the event and relocation from Indiana to Alabama would affect the festival. There were 32 bands ready to compete and with solo and ensemble events also being held, the weekend can be regarded as successful.

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Issue 6138 digital May 5, 2022