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Issue 5959

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Inverclyde musicians shine at Riverside Youth Band Solo Contest

Monday 3 April, 2017

Talented brass and percussion players from Inverclyde have hit the high notes at Riverside Youth Band’s first ever solo competition. Fifteen band members took to the stage to perform their chosen works at the event in Port Glasgow Salvation Army on Saturday, 25 March.

Cornet player Alan Hunter, 15, triumphed in the senior solo competition ahead of 13-year-old Libby Hunter on tenor horn and trombone player Jack Vize, aged 15.

Clydeview Academy pupil Alan (pictured below) also took the overall award for outstanding brass performance with his rendition of Percy Code’s Zelda at the event, which was adjudicated by Riverside Youth Band’s Musical Director, Mark Good.

The intermediate solo competition was won by trumpet player Gregor Hewitt, 13 (pictured below), who impressed with his performance of Chattanooga Choo Choo ahead of bass trombone player Mark Gammon, 13, in second and 14-year-old Fraser Maclachlan in third.

Mark Good, Musical Director, commented: “What a wonderful standard of playing for Riverside Youth Band’s first ever solo competition. Getting on stage to play a solo in front of your peers is not an easy thing to do but it is such a positive experience and has a tremendous impact on a young musician’s development and self-confidence. Everyone did themselves and their teachers proud, and we hope the solo competition will become an annual fixture in Riverside Youth Band’s calendar.”

The solo competition came during a busy spell for Riverside Youth Band, which saw it joined by the Riverside Training Band for a concert in the Old Kirk, Kilmacolm on Sunday, 26 March. The Scottish Youth Champion band performed to an enthusiastic audience to bring ‘OK Fest’, the church’s first music festival, to a close.

A further boost for the band came after it was recently awarded £1,000 of funding from Inverclyde Council’s ‘Grants to Voluntary Organisations’ scheme, which will be used to purchase new uniforms.

Riverside Youth Band meets on Friday afternoons in St. John’s Hall, Port Glasgow. Young brass and percussion players of all levels of experience are welcome. More information is available by emailing Laura Good, Secretary of Riverside Youth Band on secretary@riversideyouthband.co.uk or searching for Riverside Youth Band on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

The full results were:

Senior solo competition

1. Alan Hunter, cornet, Gold Award

2. Libby Hunter, tenor horn, Gold Award

3. Jack Vize, trombone, Silver Award

Intermediate solo competition

1. Gregor Hewitt, trumpet, Gold Award

2. Mark Gammon, bass trombone, Gold Award

3. Fraser Maclachlan, cornet, Silver Award