TAKING ON THE TUBA - BB meets rising star, Sarah Billard

Issue 6066

CULTURE RECOVERY - Black Dyke receives £76,000 funding boost

DEAFENING SILENCE - Liv Appleton imagines a life without the arts

Youngsters from Scotland and Africa join forces

Wednesday 14 October, 2020

Young brass players from Africa and Scotland have come together to play as one in a moving tribute to the empowerment of young people from disadvantaged communities in Liberia, Rwanda and Uganda by helping them to learn valuable life skills through brass music education.

Scottish composer Alan Fernie is the musical director of Loanhead Brass Roots and Newtongrange Junior Band and also the composer in residence for Brass for Africa.
He has been the driving force behind a project to bring together young musicians from all three organisations through the virtual performance of a new composition by him entitled As One.

Alan introduces the video by saying that, despite the strange and uncertain times we are living in, we can all still play as one. He then opens up the piece with a duet between himself on trombone and a young horn player in Uganda, also called Allan (with two LLs).

Reflecting on the experience, Alan told British Bandsman: “These are strange times for us all. We have been sitting at home, finding new ways to experience what we do, some of which have been very successful. Since we’re all in this together, across the world, it struck me that this would offer the ideal opportunity to embrace the technology and work together – As One seemed like the perfect title.”

Alan, who has visited Africa three times as part of his involvement with the charity, continued: “There is a lot of unrest in different corners of the world at present – you just need to look at what has been going on in some parts of the USA. However, it really hit home to me when I was out in Africa that we really are all in this together. For all we come from different corners of the world and our life experiences might be completely different, we are all the same – and this piece is just a light-hearted way of showing that.

“I would like to thank Alice and Natalie Kane for putting the whole video together. They’ve done an absolutely brilliant job.”

The music for As One will be available on the Brass for Africa website.