Adjudicator Profiling

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by ploughboy, Jan 24, 2009.

  1. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    Morning all,

    I've bee thinking . . . usually a dangerous tactic i know!

    When going to a contest I hear conductors say - don't do this/that the chap in the box doesn't like it.

    for example - at butlins recently, I was asked to keep the percussion down a little because Pete Roberts isn't a big fan of our section and likes to hear brass first. I think I remember being told our own John Roberts doesn't like percussion on a contest march, so when he was adjudicating Easingwold we had the night off the stand (i'm sure JR will confirm .. . )

    So, I got to thinking, what do we know about each adjudicator, what are their little bug bears that we want to avoid.

    I am not wanting to adjudicator bash. I wondered with our collective knowledge if we could build up some little profiles of our countrys adjudicators, rather than waiting till back stage at the draw for words of wisdom that are pointless at that stage. I'm sure some of our adjudicators on here may wish to chip in too. .


    I'm sure we all know Chris Wormold has a highly tuned ear for tuning & intonation.
  2. Chunky

    Chunky Active Member

    I totally hear what you are saying Garry and we all want to win contests.

    However as an MD surely you should be preparing the band in interpretation of the music and also in a way suits your band.

    Surely once a conductor tailors his performance to what 1 person wants to hear you lose some integrity?

    Also we have enough trouble getting people to listen at contests. How sterile would it be if all bands played in the same style and way to satisfy the man in the box?
  3. Bass Trumpet

    Bass Trumpet Active Member

    I have to agree with The Chunkmeister on this one. I prepare my band to play the piece how I think it should sound, irrespective of what the adjudicator thinks. If the adjudicator is unprofessional enough to let his own personal ideas on the interpretation creep in, he really shouldn't be in the box in the first place.

    I am sure there are a few out there who think that the only way to play Resurgam is the way that Band X played it when they won Contest X with Mr X conducting. However, an experienced box-dweller will know what to look out for, what the pitfalls are, and most importantly, he will respect the conductor's interpretation even if it differs from the conventional.
  4. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    I wasnt' really thinking of intepretation in that sense. And I agree, i'm very much the same, I do things the way i want to do them, but surely we go there to win, And if I need to ask my perc section to pipe down a notch (not dissapear) then why not. If you're going to win, surely every little helps.
  5. The Wherryman

    The Wherryman Active Member

    On the other hand, if every MD knows everything about all the adjudicators and they all "interpret" the pieces accordingly, won't that make for rather bland, samey performances. Perhaps, without advertising it, there might be a few adjudicators out there who are looking for the performance with just that little bit of extra oomph.
  6. Chunky

    Chunky Active Member

    Surely the adjudicator is that to judge what he hears, not what he wants to hear.

    Even adjusting the percussion (as per your example Garry) is pandering to the judges needs.

    Believe in your own ability to produce the winning musical performance!
  7. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member

    self belief has never been an issue. ;). i'm not for a minute suggesting well all stick to the same tempo's - and shapes, i wouldn't want to conduct like that, i like the freedom to do things how i feel them. But (onto another topic) why then do so many people go to the area test piece workshops put on around the country by Conductors Association? everyone is looking for that extra edge, and to learn a little bit of somthing would be nice too!
  8. steve butler

    steve butler Active Member

    We had this debate a few times at Kippax, in the end it was agreed that to "succeed" in contests, some sacrificing of integrity may be required. We all put a bit of our musical "higher ground" stance to one side and prepared pieces to please our relevant adjudicators.
    And guess what! It worked, and we started winning contests left right and centre!
    Did we feel guilty? Not in the slightest.
    Did we feel we had abandoned some of our musical principles? Yes.
    Did it bother us? Not one iota. We felt if we enterd a "contest" then the idea was to try and "win".
    Thats the whole idea about a "contest"

    Previously we had steadfastly stuck to our principles and endeavoured to play pieces as "we" felt they should be played, and ended up in section 2.

    The moral, if contests must be participated in, then play to win.
    Use concerts for the outlet to showcase your real musical integrity.

    PS this does not mean we did not play some great music in our winning performances, just that it would have been slightly different if winning (maintaining financial and ranking status) was not so important.

    PPS most of this success (musical as well as conesting) was down to the late great Keith Wardle. Thanks Keith.
  9. Roger Thorne

    Roger Thorne Active Member

    I agree with what has already been said in reply to Garys post, but at the same time can understand what Gary is getting at.
    Personally I think an adjudicators 'likes and dislikes' are probably more related to entertainment competitions. I have 'tailored' several entertainment programmes to suit a specific adjudicator and have been very successful with the results. In these circumstances knowing the 'likes and dislikes' of an adjudicator can certainly be beneficial.

  10. brassbandmaestro

    brassbandmaestro Active Member

    But at the end of the day, all depends how your band plays on stage!
  11. Well my limited knowledge may not count for much here but as far as im aware Alan Morrison absolutly hates it when the bass section put in pedals that arn't written. (so much so that in the welsh regionals last year cory came third and apparently pedal notes may have been a big contributing factor to this outcome)

    Apparently Paul Lovette Cooper is very particular to percussion to blending in and not being too overpowering.
  12. Bayerd

    Bayerd Active Member

    Which doesn't help when the snare drum needs to cover the fact the back row can't double tongue;)
  13. themusicalrentboy

    themusicalrentboy Active Member

    you played Hostile Skies then??
  14. DublinBass

    DublinBass Supporting Member

    With the dozens upon dozens of musical parts to a testpiece, I really think that pandering 1 or 2 ideas to the adjudicator is such a small percentage of the overall piece. Your band may even learn a thing or two focusing on those areas.
  15. Super Ph

    Super Ph Member

    a lot of the adjudicators i have seen recently have favoured the bands that played together, in tune, stylishly, securely, good sound, etc.

    that's really very unfair on my band.
  16. Bayerd

    Bayerd Active Member

    No, but I've heard enough performances where Percs are used as a cover up as it's thought less points will be lost.....
  17. Daisy Duck

    Daisy Duck Member

    Ha ha! :clap:


    Some judges like bands who slip them a few quid before they go in the box !
  19. ploughboy

    ploughboy Active Member



    When do we start the whip round for Bradford ?:cool:

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