BCB perform in Swanage Sat. 17 August

swanage-06BCB 10 piece Jun11 - Mirimar Colour

BCB 's 10 piece ensemble presented a concert at St Marys church Swanage for the annual Flower Festival.

The group played a wide range of music from Mozart, traditional melodies and contemporary popular music.

**Here is the group seen at a corporate event at the Mirimar Hotel in Bournemouth in 2012


Sonderborg Ringriderfest

Bournemouth Concert Brass: A second successful visit to the Sonderborg Ringriderfest in Denmark

John Woods’s reports on Bournemouth Concert Brass recent 6 day tour to Sonderborg in Southern Jutland Denmark

The band made such an impact during its 2012 visit to the Ringriderfest that they were invited back to participate in this year’s 125th anniversary celebrations.

Sonderborg ‘s annual event, established since 1888, lasts for four days and is unique to this area of Denmark. Horses and Riders from a wide area converge on the town for a festival that also includes two band tattoos, numerous parades and marches from the castle to the festival ground and pop up plaza concerts.

The main focus is the equestrian contest. Riders have to spear small rings at speed on horseback similar to jousting. Music is a key element to the parades and ceremonies. The whole town shuts down for the weekend to enjoy concerts and music at a variety of locations throughout this pretty island based community.

An enlarged Bournemouth Concert Brass made the 2400 kilometre return trip also including 6 Pipers from the Scots Guards Association.

Major David Barringer, MD and professional conductor of Bournemouth Concert Brass, has been involved with the event for a number of years, and as lead Director of Music for the festival over the last 2 years, planning the very full programme of events and range of ensembles playing a variety of themed music .

The support for all bands during the events was extremely well planned and co ordinate by the local organising committee and at all times the bands were well looked after with typical Danish hospitality.

BCB stayed at a local Danish Army Barracks with ideal facilities for a touring band and superb views of the islands waterfront and a large car park for marching practice!

Other participating bands were:

  • The Pipes and Drums of the Scots Guards Association
  • The Honourable Artillery company Band & Band of the Royal Yeomanry
  • Den Kongelige Livgardes Tambourkorps
  • Copenhagen Showband
  • Sonderborg Garden
  • Sonderborg Pipes and Drums
  • Aarhus Postorkester
  • Garderhusarregimentets Tambourkorps

Most of the events took place outdoors and included marches and countermarching! This was always going to be a challenge, so sufficient rehearsal time had been factored in for parade ground practice both before we left UK and on arrival. Lionel Burdett was our superb Drum Major and did an excellent job of preparing us and giving briefings for each performance. Dave Barringer's mantra for the tour was to work hard, concentrate and enjoy ourselves! I think all members lived up to that expectation. The nucleus of the band was from BCB but with guests from a number of bands including myself to swell the band to 41 players!

Our diary of performances went like this:-

Thursday - We had left the previous evening and via Calais crossed the English Channel at 2am, most of the band then slept and with 2 excellent drivers Tim and Terry, no break was needed until Germany. It was late afternoon before arrival at the Officers barracks in Sonderborg, our base for the next 5 days.

Friday - Today started with our most significant challenge, a 3 km march the majority of which was up-hill and over cobbled streets and in temperatures exceeding 25 degrees centigrade.

The afternoon was filled with more marching rehearsal and practice for the Tattoo with the other bands. The Highland Cathedral Sonderborg March and The Gael and Amazing Grace were pretty familiar by now. Then a short march and Concert outside a sponsor bank in town centre. This drew large crowds.

Saturday - March to Town Square where all bands provided a concert, individual and joint numbers. Rob Taylor on Trombone delivered a crowd pleasing rendition of "Can’t take my eyes off of you" whilst walking and playing round the fountain. This concert was conducted by Bill Willis as Major Barringer had made an overnight return to UK to conduct the British Army Brass Band Concert at Kneller Hall.

Two birthdays were celebrated during the tour Alfie Hughes (Horn) and Bill Willis E Tuba).

Sunday - Was an early start for the Mayors breakfast. As mentioned earlier the whole event is steeped in tradition and ceremony with ceremonial trumpeters and pipes we marched to mayor’s house and into her large garden. Speeches and presentations took place in glorious sunshine before we marched back again through the streets of a quiet Sonderborg village.

Next, back to Castle near the harbour. This was the backdrop for the parade to congregate in readiness for the march to the festival ground. The uphill route and horse deposit challenges remained! Very much a case of watch your step!

At the festival ground large crowds enjoying the Ringrider festival and fairground-all bands took part in Tattoo with individual performances and massed finale.

Monday - A morning concert in the Town Square was again played to a receptive local crowd. Tour soloists included Matt Chiverton (Soprano) and Rachel Bartlett (Flugel)

This was followed by lunch for town dignitaries and their guests when again musical entertainment was provided by the band. Danish hospitality was displayed on a grand scale with some 2000 seated guests. All the bands marched in and formed up to entertain with a variety of traditional items ranging from Highland Cathedral through to Hey Jude and YMCA! Major Barringer and Major David Millgate (Conductor of combined Honourable Artillery Company Band & Band of the Royal Yeomanry) conducted from a trestle table top in the centre of the vast tent that had been equipped with CCTV and a large multi media screen.

That evening the finale took place as the tattoo fell in to darkness. An emotional “The day thou gavest” was delivered, ending the festival. There followed a spectacular firework display. At this time the whole town then went into party mode - band included.

BCB almost missed the last Tattoo as the batteries on band’s coach went flat! We left our base for the finale on a borrowed coach whilst our drivers, Tim and Terry, sought breakdown assistance!

Tuesday - 8am. In a revived and fully loaded coach, we started the long journey back via Calais, arriving back in Bournemouth in the early hours of Wednesday.

This was a great opportunity for BCB to show what British Brass bands are capable of. The whole tour was co ordinated by Major Dave Barringer, who put together a musical programs and marching displays. Mention must be made of BCB’s secretary, John Kidby and his wife Lois, who both did an excellent job planning and organising. Thanks also to Bill Willis who prepared all the music, a truly mammoth task, and to Nick Jarvis for compiling the tour awards.

Click here to see the band playing in the local town square.

Shortly after the trip the following email was received:

 ""Dear Bournemouth Concert Brass. Thank you for your Amazing music and tattoo at Sønderborg Ringriding. Hope so much to see you again next year. It is so long time to wait.
I have a specialy relation to British military because my father served in the British army in 3 year. I have enjoyed it since I was child. (1963).

Best regards

The Joergensen Family""

BCB perform at St Peter's Church

stpeterOn 6th July, Bournemouth Concert Brass gave a concert in the iconic St Peter's Church in the heart of Bournemouth.

The band commenced the evening with the lively "Olympic Spirit", The band then performed the Festival March - 'Able' which is always dedicated to the organisations and charities that the band work with those who "enable" others to achieve project objectives. Soloists for the evening were Helen Kinder (Euphonium), who gave a scintilating performance of Brillante. Alf Hughes (Solo Cornet) and Rachel Bartlet (Flugel) in 'Can You Feel the Love Tonight' and 'Where is Love' respectively.

The band's in-house arrangers provided a number of items to the programme. Peter Hartley with his arrangement of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein' St. Peter's being the resting place of Mary Shelley. Brad Rouillier's arrangement of 'Princess Leia' from his Star Wars suite and Bill Willis's selection of Chicago, 'Can You Feel the Love' and 'Skyfall'.

The band played a number of pieces from the library of the Salavation Army, which were well received by the audience. these were Variations on 'Laudate Dominum', 'Fanfare on St. Francis' and the delightful melody of 'Shennandoah'.

Other popular pices played were 'Breezin Down Broadway' and 'And the Band Played On'.

The concert, and mix of music was acknowledged by the audience and BCB are looking to extend their relationship with the church to provide concerts in the furture. St. Peter's are hoping that the church will become a regular venue for concerts.

A london based patron who was staying in Bourenmouth that week emailed  - "just to let you know that we were at the concert at St Peter's Church on 6 July and very much enjoyed it. The programme was excellent. Please keep us posted with future concerts".


Brenda Kirby


Hollywood & Broadway Concert 

regent centreBCB performed their annual 'themed' concert at the Regent Centre on Sunday 23 June under the direction of the band's resident conductor - Bill Willis.

The band utilised their 'in-house' arrangers to provide some of the music for this concert, with contributions from Peter Hartley (Frankenstein), Bill Willis (Skyfall). both of these receiving their premier performances, and Brad Rouillier (Princess Leia).

Other music ranged from Chicago, Let's Face the Music, Les Miserables, Gonna Fly Now, And The Band Played On, Breezin' Down Broadway and finishing with Hello Dolly.

The Band's soloists for the evening were Alf Hughes, cornet - Can You Feel The Love Tonight, Rachel Bartlett, Flugel -Where Is Love, and Matt Chiverton, soprano - Memory (from the musical Cats).

The guest soloist for the evening was Darren Barlett. Darren has played with the band on many occasions and he provided two Vocal solos, bringing the house down with his two contributions, Love Changes Everything and You'll Never Walk Alone.

Harry Paye Pirate Day

Harry PayeBournemouth Concert Brass accepted the invitation to lead the parade in the annual Harry Paye Day event, which is held in honour of a pirate from Poole. Hundreds of people dressed as pirates lined Poole Quay as part of a day of pirate-themed celebrations.

Poole Town Crier, David Squire, and Mayor of Poole, Cllr Phil Eades, and the Mayoress, his wife, Helen, officially launched the start of the Parade of the Pirates. BCB provided suitable themed marches such as Anchors Aweigh, Life on the Ocean Wave, the Great Escape and Death or Glory, as the parade travelled along the quay and down the Old High Street.

Follow the link below to see a short clip of the march: http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/video/2481501366001/?ref=vidshare

Who was Harry Paye?

Most people have heard of Sir Francis Drake, English hero of the struggle against the Spanish Armada. To the Spanish he was an evil pirate who they called El Draqui. Drake was following in the wake of a man of Poole, Harry Paye, known to the Spanish as Arripaye.

Harry had a colourful life, He and his ship the Mary appear in the kings records as being licensed to carry pilgrims to Spain. The Spanish archives record him as stealing the gold cross from the church at Finisterre. He was notorious for having burnt the Spanish walled city of Gijon, home of his lover, the Countess Isabel. Harry's activities in Spain drove the Spanish to seek revenge. In 1405 a squadron of Spanish and French galleys were making their way along the south coast. When they reached Poole they heard that it was home town to the dreaded Arripaye who was away with the English fleet. The galleys were crammed with heavily armed fighting men who attacked the town. The people of Poole fought valiantly and the fighting was fierce with many killed on both sides, including Harry's brother. Eventually the Poole people were forced to flee to the heath leaving the raiders to burn the town.

Two years later, in 1407, Harry decided it was "paye back" time. His ship and 14 others swept the English Channel capturing French and Spanish cargo vessels. The archives record that 120 ships were captured loaded with valuable goods including vast quantities of good French wine. To help to recompense the people of Poole for their sufferings Harry brought the captured ships back to Poole. According to local tradition the town feasted and drank the captured wine for many days.

So raise your glass to Harry Paye, fighting man of Poole. Celebrate Paye Day on this day, Poole town's most famous party.

BCB KetteringAll England Masters International – Kettering 2013

BCB travelled to Kettering to take part in the All England Masters International competition. Against 22 other bands, the test piece was 'A Kensington concerto' written by Eric Ball.

The band's preparation was hampered by a number of events such as illness, work and holidays, which necessitated the use of several deputies at short notice.

The adjudicators placed the band 21st. This was a bit of a blow for the band considering the levels of success we had achieved over the last 2-3 years. However, we move forward and learn from the experience. The band are now looking forward to their forthcoming ventures, and have concerts planned for The Regent Centre, Christchurch on 23 June (also featuring Darren Bartlett – Vocal Soloist) and St. Peter's Church, Bournemouth on 6 July, they will be featuring a variety of popular music which will include the world premieres of 2 new arrangements by members of the band. We look forward to seeing you.

Check out the 'Diary' page for further details

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