Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by Laserbeam bass, Apr 1, 2012.
If the demand is for mediocrity, you'll get it!
I think I said last year, one piece that I would love to hear in a British Brass contest is 'The Legend of King Arthur' by Peter Meechan - it's a great piece of music with memorable tunes. Another one that I thought was good was the Norwegian National Championships set work 'Goldberg 2012' by Sven Henrik Giske, which was absolutely amazing! Other contemporary pieces such as 'Sketches From Nowhere' by Thomas Doss, 'Old Licks Blues Up' T. Aagraad-Nilsen, 'From Ancient Times' by J Van de Roost, 'Symphony of Colour' by Simon Dobson, 'A Tale as Yet Untold' by Philip Sparke and 'Earthrise' by Nigel Clarke, would be great choices for British brass contests.
From the last post, I hope Nigel Clarke will be given his opportunity. It won't be for 2012 though.
One piece I love, although it won't be used for the nationals is Jan Van de Roost's Albion. It was used for the 2001 nationals which is why we wouldn't see it this year, but it'd be great for the areas. I also am a fan of his From ancient times.
His work, Stonehenge, has been neglected over the years for UK contest use.
These suggestions tell their own story - Norwegian and Flemish bands are not sitting idle when it comes to pushing the repertoire forward. They are making the running while we sit here in a stagnated pool. Why don't we see more selections from the composers that are writing for these groups? Because of nothing but residual snobbery, I strongly suspect. Not being aware of this work is harming us as a movement in the UK.
Must... resist... Spinal... Tap.... reference......
At some point in the future, I would love to go onto a contest stage and just re-enact that scene. That would be the quickest route to my P45 though...
Sorry for the lack of actual words in my last post but it was a bit of a 'words fail me' moment!! I hope it was a tongue in cheek comment (cos Berlioz wasn't at all groundbreaking in his use of thematic transformation in his compositional technique or anything was he?!)
Groundbreaking doesn't equal any good... Berlioz could be pretty uneven in quality, and often rather frivolous/pretentious. Mind you, sometimes he was inspired.
Not really. It's only a personal observation, but in general I find the lack of structural discipline and formal cohesion in a great deal of his music to be irritating. Any "groundbreaking use of thematic transformation" doesn't really make up for it in my mind.
His manipulation of themes and motifs was exactly what created cohesion and structure within the music, whilst breaking away from the more rigid structures such as sonata form which were predominant at the time. Such techniques developed by Berlioz, Liszt etc are to be found widely in a great many Brass Band testpieces; composers state a theme and develop/ manipulate it.
Symphonie Fantastique is a fantastic example of Berlioz's development of a theme/motif. Whether an individual thinks he's good or not is different from saying he's not a proper composer.
(BTW, I know everyone's got different opinions and I'm not a massive fan of Berlioz or anything, but I felt the need to 'defend' him as a 'proper composer'! )
Which, it could easily be argued, may be one reason why many such pieces are musically unsatisfying on a structural level ...
As you say ...
[Edit: don't know why the quote bubble didn't work on the first bit ]
[Mod edit: you missed a "/" in the closing tag of the quote]
Because a "/" was missing from the end quote notation.
Ah, OK, ta ...
Is it in D minor?
Earthrise is fantastic!!! you havent got a rec of goldberg have ya? Ta for the rec of Burry Port's winning performance btw!!
Another vote for Pete Meechan's 'Legend of King Arthur'. Super piece... good luck to all the baritone players though!!
If you're looking for 'contemporary' music for brass bands I don't think you can look past 'Destroy, Trample, As Swiftly As She' (Gavin Higgins) or 'Waiting For A Pain Hit' (Paul McGhee), both groundbreaking and (IMO) terrific works... and both of which went down an absolute bomb on the continent but I suspect would still be met with bewilderment and cries of witchcraft this side of the channel!
Seeing that Gunnedah Shire Band has won today with 'The Legend of King Arthur' I think we might need to push to hear it in the UK! It's amazing!
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