4barsrest retrospective

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by withabix, Sep 24, 2004.

  1. withabix

    withabix New Member


    Just wondering who has all read the retrospective from this year's British Open on 4br, and also the 'Contest within a Contest' article?

    They have just said the adjudicators were wrong. hmmmm!!!!!! so when did these two normal bandsmen from Tredegar become so almighty and correct in everything they say? I'm sorry, I know tmp supports the service which 4br provide and to an extent I agree - it's the best for news and results. But for me, to go online and publish their obvious disgust to the Open results in the manner in which they have is a disgrace, not only to Fodens Band but to every competing bandsman at the weekend.

    This is irrelevant to my band and its placing. We've all had results that we didn't agree with but to go and say that these three top musicians that were adjudicating are 'wrong' and apparently incapable of differentiating between three testpieces just shocks me. Three judges cope perfectly fine at the Europeans, where this year there were seven testpieces. I don't see the big difficulty here.

    Funnily enough, the judges said that they were looking for performances that were faithful to the score, well played and musical. This is no great surprise to anybody!! I've read the crits for the top six bands and this seems to be shown in the comments.

    I wish 4br would get over themselves!

  2. ian perks

    ian perks Active Member

    Sorry .
    They make some very good points at the start :
  3. withabix

    withabix New Member

    Good for you! If there was no audience then how could THE WHOLE AUDIENCE BE BOOING AT A RESULT when they CLEARLY DID NOT HEAR ALL THE BANDS! dur!!!
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2004
  4. ian perks

    ian perks Active Member

    Very true.
    Its no good Booing AND Hissing if they did not hear all the bands.
  5. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    Did any of the competing bands (or 4BarsRest) question the adjudicators before the contest ?

    If they did'nt then they are in no position to complain after ther results.

    Adjudicators are appointed to give "their opinion" of what "they hear" on the day and make a judgement.

    Who else listened to every band and made notes to look back on and compare and then conferred with 2 other well reespected musicians?
  6. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    I think 4br, whilst well intentioned, are on occasion guilty of taking themselves a little more seriously than they're entitled to. (Though I'm humbly grateful to them for allowing me to say a piece for the 'soapbox' feature!) Still, in my soapbox, I went to great lengths to clarify that I wasn't questioning any adjudicators' ability or right to judge, but to suggest giving us the benefit of their experience and what they would look for for lower section bands before the contest/s.

    At the top level, however, they don't pick mugs to judge, and the advantage these adjudicators have is that they're vastly more experienced at READING THE WHOLE SCORE as conductors or composers than 99.9% of the listening audience, be they made up of competing bandspersons or not. The chances are, therefore, that they will pick up on little things that a listener in the audience without a score, no matter how experienced he/she is as a player, will more than likely fail to spot. I'm not saying this was the necessarily the case at the Open as I was not there, but it ill behoves 4br to castigate the abilities or the right of certain individuals to judge, (as they have done now for the past two 'biggies') when in days gone by in the 'comments' section, they were pretty useful at slapping down correspondents' similar diatribes. Just because one happens to be an experienced player doesn't mean to say that automatically converts them into highly qualified conductors or adjudicators.

    Yes, we've ALL felt at times that we've been 'robbed' at one time or another. I bet that for all those instances, that we've all equally had placings that have been higher than expected. Humans are fallible, particularly musically whether employed in playing, teaching or employed to judge. That is (or was) the beauty of contesting. It's now become so much a competitive sport instead of a festival of entertainment. Gawd 'elp those employed to judge at the RAH next month. Or perhaps 4br can tell them in advance who they should put where, irrespective of how they actually play
    and then (nearly) everybody will be happy, because that's pretty much the line they're beginning to take.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2004
  7. Red Elvis

    Red Elvis Active Member

    I wasnt at the open and therefore can't and won't offer an opinion on places .Given the controversy that has resulted , would it not be an idea for adjudicators to make their remarks public ( after handing them out to the competing bands ) so we can see the basis on which they make their judgements ?
    ( This might already happen in some contests , if so pardon me for asking what will read as a silly question , but I'm still very new to the contest scene)
  8. Di

    Di Active Member

    You'll find the remarks for the top 6 bands in this weeks British Bandsman ;)
  9. Humphrey

    Humphrey Member

    I don't normally give 4BR the time of day but I did happen to read their "Contest within a Contest" article. It filled me with disgust. It might be useful for 4BR (and others) to remember that only 3 people were asked (and paid) to give an opinion and they discharged their duty in an honest manner. I understand that some people will wish to offer their opinions after the fact and providing they're inoffensive and hopefully magnanimous, we by and large accept those opinions.
    I didn't read that 4BR had complained about the choice of adjudicators prior to the Open and in the absence of any national set of criteria for judging contests they should accept that the adjudicators will apply their own.
    In suggesting that respected musicians were either naieve or ignorant is insulting and the suggestion that we may need to bring back the usual suspects (sorry, experienced adjudicators) to save the contest pathetic.
    I have heard a great many people say how well Dyke played and an equal number who take the opposite view. Thats how it goes 4BR!
    Grow up and learn to accept the result in the same way everybody else must but if you must write about it at least try to be fair. I suggest that you sound MORE like the man in the pub than Michael Ball ever could!
  10. Kirkie boy

    Kirkie boy New Member

    I thought the article 'contest within a contest' was very inapropriate and should never have been included in 4barsrest coverage of the British Open championships.
  11. Yorkie

    Yorkie Member

    As someone who was not able to be at the Open I very much appreciated reading all the pre and post contest articles and comment whether that came through tmp or 4barsrest. Much of this was informative yet contradictory, reassuring yet worrying all at the same time. What is clear however is how predictable we are as a movement by reacting in the way we do to contest results that perhaps not everyone would agree with. The 4barsrest retrospective does not claim to be the last word in opinion but an opinion which if you have a thinking brain you can take or leave.

    History will rightly record that Fodens were the British Open Champions 2004 fair and square and that is all that matters. It is sad that an element of the audience, and we will never know how many, choose to boo when Dyke were announced in sixth place and it is they and not 4barsrest who in my opinion have shown the greatest disrespect to the adjudicators and indeed Fodens

    I wasn't there but I say well done Fodens for winning the contest and great music making, well done to Dyke for what also appears to have been great music making and well done the adjudicators for helping to enliven this forum and 4barsrest by your decisions.
  12. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Well-Known Member

    As with most contest results, everyone has an opinion. The variety of these following the Open only serves to show what a tough job adjudicators have.

    All we can hope for to maintain the integrity of contesting is that the best available adjudicators are used. And not abused.

    The opionions voiced on 4barsRest are no more or less vaild than yours or mine. The difference is that they weren't in the box (so their opinions are only that) and have access to a (very useful) web site that many people (quite rightly) read.

    But theirs is only the opinion of a couple of bandsman. I don't think they pretend otherwise. I appreciate that their misjudged article has provoked some ire, but don't lose sleep over it, just take it as the opinion of one bandsman with a good website.
  13. critic

    critic Member

    4barsrest As Come In For A Lot Of Stick Over There Comments At The Open. First Of All I Agree With Yorkie The Idiots Who Booed And Hissed At The Decisions Made By The Judges Are The Ones Who Bring Shame On The Movement Not 4barsrest. The Seccond Point Is That 4bars Rest Would Have Heard All The Performances Not Like Some Who Only Go On Heresay. Like Them Or Loathe Them 4bars Rest Do A Exellent Job At These Contests And Like Anyone Else They Only Give There Opinions.keepup The Good Work And Stick By Your Comments Like Thetmp Thread Its All About Opinions.
  14. wewizrobbed

    wewizrobbed Member

    People booing etc at results have shown their opinion in a disrepectful manner just as 4br have. Yes, we are all entitled to our opinion, but personally I feel it loses credit when it's done in such a fashion.


  15. iggmeister

    iggmeister Member

    I have no problem with 4BR and think they do an excellent job. The difference with 4BR and say BB and BBW is that 4BR is prepared to put it's money where it's mouth is. Sometimes they are right, sometimes they are wrong. Whichever you consider they are depends on your own subjective opinion.

    They own 4BR and therefore can say whatever they like. If you dont like it, dont read it. It is their opinions which are no more set in stine than those of BB and BBW (when they get off the fence) or any person in the movement.

    I did feel that their article was bound to bring out the sour grapes brigade and that should have been expected by them. I'm sure they can take it on the chin.

    At least their article has got people thinking about the contest and hopefully after discussion and debate decisions might be made in the future which are universally accept to be for the benefit of the contest.

    As for empty seat I have a couple of thoughts. Bandsmen are encouraged to buy tickets and listen to other bands. I generally do that. Therefore, if all members of bands buy tickets (which I know doesn't happen, but some band members certainly do), when they are waiting backstage to play they can hardly be expected to be in the hall listening. Ergo, empty seats. Also some players take their partners/family/friends with them to contests. Sure, they may want to listen to that person's band but aren't too interested in the other bands. I know for certain that my mum is one of those! That is life. Not everybody who buys a ticket will want to listen to every single band. Even I don't normally want to do that! It's not like you buy a ticket to say, a musical, when you go to see the whole show. Some people just dont want repetition and once they have heard that particular piece they dont want to hear another 6 or 7 versions of it.

    I doubt there will ever be a contest where every seat is filled for every performance.

  16. wewizrobbed

    wewizrobbed Member

    My band did extremely well - this is nothing to do with sour grapes!! I have no problem with 4br's own opinion, I think people have read this wrong. My point is that saying 'the judges were wrong' is completely different to saying 'we didn't agree with the final result'. They have presented their opinion as fact, which isn't the case. Just because somebody doesn't agree with your opinion doesn't mean they are wrong.

  17. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    Ah Lucy, Sadly in the brass band world this is often the case. Hence why people get so het up at contests over such things as the results, the cost of the beer and the draw.

    I think it's another side to the same coin as the crowd of boorish unwashed who behaved so abominably at the now notorious B&R concert.

    I may not always agree with adjudicators, but I am prepared to allow them some respect for the job that they do for us and to agree to differ.
  18. Humphrey

    Humphrey Member

    Replying to "just" criticism?! Shouldn't that be your cue to go away and write a 5th Symphony or something? :)
    I don't think many people will lose sleep over 4BRs opinions although I think 4BR should appreciate that some people may attach more credence to those opinions than they otherwise might.
    Personally, I think you and your colleagues did an excellent job under difficult circumstances and although my band did less well than we would have liked, we found the feedback useful and accurate. 1st place aside, we can ask for nothing more. :D
  19. hellraiser

    hellraiser Member

    When someone expresses opinions in what looks like an established format such as a newspaper, magazine or a well presented website then rightly or wrongly people will take these opinions more seriously than if they heard that opinion down the pub, bus stop or bandroom. This is more a reflection of many people believing everything they read more than anything else.

    Whether you love or hate 4barsrest it seems that they've found themselves in quite an influencial position. This is because the likes of you and I go on that website and read what they say. That's our choice. We've made them into the influencial voice that they now are. What matters to them is not whether they're right or wrong, but that everyone talks about them. Their opinion causes interest - this is what keeps the website going.

    It's also our choice to ignore what they say and not go on the website if we think what they say is rubbish or causes offence.

    Sometimes what they say resonates with what we might think. However the only opinions that matter at band contests are those of the adjudicators. There are no trophies to be won by pleasing 4barsrest. It's all well and good taking comfort that 4barsrest reckons your band was hard done by at a contest. However how will you feel when you've won a contest and they disagree with the result? You can't have it both ways.

    It's a pity people can't keep this website in perspective.
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2004
  20. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    One thing I do feel about the post-Open debate, is that the amount of booing and/or hissing has been greatly exagerated. From where I was sitting, in the Arena, it was not so much a question of booing or hissing, but rather an intake of breath and surprise at the appearance in 6th place of a band that most seemed to have been expecting to be in the top couple of places.

    As has been said, not least by Philip in his response to 4br, most of us were not in the box, and would not have heard things exactly as they did. What I did find interesting was how, albeit for different reasons, both 4br & Philip had reservations over the three-test-piece format.

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