The BTM Band once again made the short trip to the Wychavon Festival of Brass, which in the past few years has been held at Evesham’s De Montfort School. This contest has been traditionally a happy “hunting ground” for the band, having won the Championship Section contest on no less than five separate occasions. In recent years, the band has found relative success in Section 1, coming in the top six in each of the last three years.
The band chose to perform a programme themed on the recent Rugby World Cup in Japan – in fact, the Rugby World Cup Final was on at 09:00am on the day of the contest itself, so it was very apt! BTM’s programme opened with the second half of Gareth Wood’s Japanese Slumber Song (Principal Euphonium Tim Jones starting the whole programme performing unaccompanied). This led straight into Wood’s classic brass band arrangement of Sosban Fach.
BTM’s featured soloist on the day was Principal Cornet Alex Parker, who performed the lyrical solo Pater Noster (Our Father) composed by Rebecca Lundberg. The band’s finale began with the effective “Nightmare” from Peter Graham’s Cry of the Celts, which led straight into the last part of the wonderful brass band test-piece “Land of the Long White Cloud (Philip Sparke).
The band entered both Section 1 and the Championship Section – with the Championship performance being first in the day. With performing twice on the same day, the drawback is that the band would invariably be happier with one performance than the other… and so it proved.
Overall, the band was disappointed to be placed 13th in Section 1 and 18th in the Championship Section. However, the band thoroughly enjoyed their time at Wychavon Festival of Brass once again, and will support the contest in 2020 when it’s going to be held on Hallowe’en!
BTM will now be working towards their busy Christmas festive season, which includes the BTM Band Society Christmas Concert at Bedwas Workmen’s Hall on Saturday 14th December as well as several caroling gigs (including some prestigious dates at the Principality Stadium).