4BR First Section Bashing

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by 4thmandown, Mar 19, 2011.

  1. 4thmandown

    4thmandown Member

    Why is 4BR so down on First Section Bands?

    All I've read so far is how badly the bands are doing on Carnival Romain, with the implication that it is disappointing given that these are "aspiring" Championship Section Bands.

    My argument would be that far from that, the test piece is a suitable choice, which thus far has clearly differentiated between the bands. Isn't that the idea?

    My other point is that gaining First Section status is one hell of an achievement for many bands. Achieving and then retaining Championship Section status is a whole different ball game for what is to many people just a hobby. Is it a failure when the band doesn't meet that "aspiring" label, or is it the best that that group of players could achieve?

    As a teacher I encourage my pupils to do the best that they possibly can, and I do my level best to help them achieve that. I always say "if you have made your best effort and can be true to yourself, then no-one can ask for anything more". Why should banding be any different?
  2. The way i see it $BR are only giving a personal opinion in the same way we all do.
    I know three have been some not so clever performances as well as some that stood out well in teh 1st section.

    the pint is that every band put in a lot of effort,turned up adn gave it their best shot. For that they should all be applauded not stccked with comments of how poor the standard is.

    Agree with your teacher's comments, we certainly could not have given more on the day adn as long as everyone gave their best then the result is just man's opinion.
  3. Bayerd

    Bayerd Active Member

    It may come across that they're down on the bands, but I think they are more down on the overall standard. Current 1st section bands aren't of the standard (in the main) to compete in the Championship Section. Christ, there are already enough bands in the Championship Section that can't compete at the standard required.

    What 4br are basically saying is that the piece is too hard for the bands competing and that the panel should think a bit more before choosing the set test.
  4. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    but if you listen to a 1st section contest expecting the bands to sound sound like Dyke/Grimethorpe, ect of course you will think the standard is too low.
  5. Agree with you Stevetrom, of course we're not up there, but giving a good performacne of our test piece was the aim and we believe it was achieved. Yes it was a toughy but so what, it was great music to be challenged with. Bring it on i say adn well done for all those bands who gave it a good go all over the uk.
  6. Year of the Mother

    Year of the Mother New Member

    If 4BR had bothered to send someone to the West of England they'd have heard some super First Section performances - especially from the top three, Aldbourne, Bournemouth and Hyde.
  7. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    I tend to agree and think that is a comment worthy of discussion.
    Perhaps it should have its own thread.

    - Mr Wilx
  8. simonium

    simonium Member

    You can easily extend this to Second Section bashing as well. Our retrospective is very negative, but precludes any thoughts of "maybe it's the testpiece that is the problem". I have heard that 4barsrest missed performances in the Second Section at Torquay but somehow managed to write about them. Now that's talent! I will also admit that this "information" may not be accurate in the slightest.
  9. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    like most tests, if you are the best of those being tested you win.

    So if a band wins contests, at whatever level, and gets promoted it has earned the right to play at that level.

    Should the Premier League be reduced to 6 teams, because the others aren't 'Premier League' standard?
  10. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    Amusing, but a tad worrying !

    - Mr Wilx
  11. Kinrao

    Kinrao Member

    Two things here; 4br is a media publication that will offer balanced opinion on what's happening in the movement. If they think that bands have struggled with Carnival Romain then surely that's their right and probably duty to report accordingly?

    Secondly, it comes as no surprise that 1st section bands are struggling with the piece. You only have to go back 7 or 8 years to when it gave the bands in the senior cup a real torrid time.

    Pieces in the lower sections were very tough this year so I think the issue lies around section structure and test-piece selection, not how the resulting performances are being reported.
  12. simonium

    simonium Member

    I think what irks people is the pre-contest coverage of 4br highlighted the fact the choice of pieces in some instances was unrealistic - they then go and slaughter bands for not performing them adequately. I don't really mind what they do - they didn't especially like my band's performance, but the adjudicators did :)
  13. critic

    critic Member

    I suggest you get your facts right
  14. fartycat

    fartycat Member

    Could have sworn I saw Mr Fox on the balcony at Torquay for both the 1st and 2nd sections.
  15. Bandito

    Bandito New Member

    It's a competition, it's all relative, all that matters is how well you do compared with the other guy's. The standard is set by the competitors not the pundits. The artistic absolutism of 4BR commentators is not only irrational but irrelevant.
  16. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    Another consideration is how to approach the appraisal of performances. Before a note is played, do you have (1) a perfect performance or (2) a blank sheet to use as your method of points deduction/accumulation?? It's something that is not really discussed for adjudication practice. If you think about it, either can have dramatically different outcomes in terms of comments.
  17. casanova

    casanova Member

    I think that if you're going to select a test piece for any of the lower sections - you should aim it to be difficult enough that the midtable bands can play it.

    That way, the bands that play it far too well can go up, the bands that really struggle go down and the ones that can simply play it stay where they deserve to.
  18. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    This has been my view for many years.
  19. needmorevodka

    needmorevodka Member

    I agree, and it was my opinion that this is what happened with Carnaval Romain (in the Midlands anyway, can't speak for the other areas).

    The 4BR retrospective would have you believe the standard was diabolical (and indeed fellow bandspeople in the audience are known to have posted on facebook about how disappointed they were), but if every performance was note perfect where would the "contest" be? Is it not the point, to hear varying standards which separate the bands? If so, Carnaval Romain did just that and was therefore a great choice.

    Our own performance was ok and so our result (10th) was also ok. We weren't unhappy with it, and the adjudicators both gave good constructive critique, focussing on the good points such as "Well directed and controlled", "Very well prepared performance", "musically compelling playing", "full of clarity"..... etc. 4BR dismissed it as "lack lustre" and "marred by nerves and scrappy ensemble", which I think is rather harsh (not to mention bearing no resemblance whatsoever to the view of the judges).

    I'm actually rather sick of 4BR (and other bandsmen) bashing people's efforts almost sneeringly, when we all know the amount of work that goes into preparing for a contest (and for many bands, the effort of getting enough players together to even think of competing). Contesting seems to make people very mean-spirited and it's not necessary.
  20. grausue

    grausue Member


    You are so right! I vote for a Harborough/Foss Dyke celebration of effort (with or without vodka, but mainly with) in future whenever possible?

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