Adjudicators / Players

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by subtlevib, Mar 14, 2014.

  1. subtlevib

    subtlevib Member

    I don't know if this has been touched on before, but what are your thoughts on the following: How can it be deemed objective or ethical even, for a musician, actively playing in the Championship Section, to adjudicate the same section in another area?
  2. jockinafrock

    jockinafrock Active Member

    I can't see why not, as long as the appropriate criteria is followed for adjudicating the piece, and not just on how the 'player cum adjudicator' has played it themselves in their own band. Who's to say that they agreed with the way that their own MD took the piece anyway?
    I'm sure they have satisfied the requirements to adjudicate at an area level, and I for one would be glad to see a fresh face adjudicate. I believe there are only a handful of player/adjudicators anyway and, from the ones I know of, I would be confident of a balanced, fair and educated adjudication
    from them :)
  3. Euphonium Lite

    Euphonium Lite Active Member

    I dont think its necessarily a problem. Where you may have an issue is where a championship player is adjudicating and one or more of his band colleagues - and perhaps his MD and resident conductor - are also conducting. Whats to stop secret signals (for example I used to play in a band where the MD would blow his nose after the whistle had gone, but before we played - whether he did it as a signal I dont know but we had mixed results so obviously didnt always work). I guess we are going to have to trust peoples integrity until someone comes up with something better
  4. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    This argument comes up in one form or another nearly every year....
    Lots of adjudicators, players and conductors know each other and work together one way or another. If you tried to eliminate the supposed risk of cheating (which is minimal to none anyway imho), then you'd be left with an impossibly small pool of available folk to do the job.

    As EL has said, its all about trust.
    If you really do doubt an adjudicator's integrity, say something before the contest.
  5. stevetrom

    stevetrom Well-Known Member

    If we don't trust our adjudicator we might as well give up.

    They do their best to give a honest opinion.

    That's it.

    Give them a break.
  6. fartycat

    fartycat Member

    I pressume this is about Frank Renton playing 2nd cornet for Staines on St Magnus this weekend whilst also adjudicating the Championship section in the West of England last weekend? I don't see a problem with that at all, certainly not ethically. In fact, good on Frank for taking the time to play for a band, you never know, it may have helped him learn the piece from a different angle. I certainly thought he did a fair job in our section, big congratulations to Flowers, you played a blinder.
  7. cockaigne

    cockaigne Member

    If it were the case of a conductor performing at a given contest, and adjudicating in the same section at a different area contest, then that would be a greyer area - both roles are seen as functions of being a professional musician. However as players, whatever our background or training, we are all officially amateurs on the contest stage.

    Frank Renton was (I believe) asked to adjudicate at Torquay as a stand-in for another adjudicator, who it was felt by some had close enough ties to some bands in that region to create a potential conflict of interests. The men in the box at Stevenage have not shared adjudication duties with Frank on this round of regional contests, so there will have been no chance for him to pass on coded messages such as "listen out for the 2nd cornet comedy split in bar 230912".

    Frank has been getting back into playing in order to support his wife who's recently taken up the cornet - they came along to Epsom & Ewell for a few weeks last summer - they were good fun to have along, though it did create a rather interesting rehearsal atmosphere at times :)
  8. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    But we don't. That's why we insist they sit in boxes where they can't see who is playing.
  9. fartycat

    fartycat Member

    Derek Broadbent was the stand in for Chris Davies. This is a little complicated so bear with me. Chris was conducting Downton (2nd section) and due to adjudicate 4th section and championship. However, because he was sharing the box with Mike Kilroy during the 4th section and Mike was then to adjudicate the 2nd section the next day, a complaint was put in about it as if two adjudicators judging 21 bands would have the time to discuss the section coming up the next day.

    I'm not sure that this actually warranted a change of adjudicator myself.
  10. cockaigne

    cockaigne Member

    Thanks for the clarification - yes, it is all rather complicated! A shame that someone saw fit to complain about such a tenuous coincidence.
  11. subtlevib

    subtlevib Member

    That's not very constructive, Stevetrom. There's always room for improvement - this is a discussion forum, so those that want to discuss can do just that.
  12. subtlevib

    subtlevib Member

  13. subtlevib

    subtlevib Member

    My point wasn't about Frank Renton - I wasn't aware of that one. It was a midlands-based scenario. The geography is by-the-by, really - it could happen anywhere.
    There were enough adjudicators to cover all sections - my only suggestion would be to swap them round so that there would be no clash of interest - it's not rocket science!
  14. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    That one hadn't even occurred to me!
    I thought it was about Brett Baker and Mike Dodd; both played in Bradford and then adjudicated last weekend....

    I don't see any ethical issue at all, and if we want good new adjudicators coming through then seeing some who also still play is inevitable - and I don't thinkits a bad thing.

    I'm with stevetrom on this one.

    Not necessarily - I've heard a lot of adjudicators argue for keeping the box to remove distractions.... nothing to do with knowing or not knowing who is on stage
  15. Bbmad

    Bbmad Active Member

    Ethical? Of course it is, brass banding is a small world. Its an almost certainty that the adjudicator will have a connection in some way to a competing band.

    My questionis is do we trust the integrity of the adjudicator or is it better to indulge in conspiracy theory.

    As for closed adjudication, I dont know if this is true but I recently heard of an adjudicator who said something along the lines of "if you are going to print the name f the band on the score, there is no point puting me in a box"
  16. Tom-King

    Tom-King Well-Known Member

    I'd certainly say that that one is a much dodgier case than any of the others mentioned, though not at all to do with individual integrity.

    With due respect to Chris Davies (who I'm sure would have done a fine job) situations with that kind of potential for complaints after the fact represent extremely poor organisation by the contest organisers.
    Just imagine if Downton had won the 2nd section, comments would have been inevitable (even totally unwarranted, as it would almost certainly be) regardless of how well they'd played - that's simply the nature of band contesting and the amount of emotional investment people have in their performances and subsequent results. Do you think everyone would have taken the sensible step back or would there have been accusations?
    Personally, I think that it was very poor organisation for that situation to arise, unfair to the person in question (and his band) and I'd certainly rather that someone brought that potential issue up BEFORE the contest rather than letting things play out and potentially having someone getting their name unnecessarily dragged through the mud through no fault of their own (as, again, I'm sure nothing underhanded would've happened).

    Don't get me wrong here, I absolutely agree about the need for trusting our adjudicators and I feel the question of people playing and adjudicating in different areas is ridiculous... the particular case of the WoE this year is just a little different.
  17. fartycat

    fartycat Member

    The Wessex BBA AGM debated this situation in full and no band present thought it was a problem. As far as many are aware, this is the first time that an adjudicator has had to pull out of one contest because of something like this. It's possibly set a precedent that will make it even harder for the Regions to set adjudicators.

    And as far as I am aware Chris Davies accepted the adjudication of the 4th and Championship sections first then took the job to conduct Downton a couple of months ago. The situation certainly didn't arise because of any fault with the West of England.

    I also note that you play for Drybrook, weren't they the band that complained?
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2014
  18. Tom-King

    Tom-King Well-Known Member

    Not sure which band actually complained.

    I know several of our lot noticed it though I doubt we were the only ones who did - and certainly nobody I spoke to thought anyone would abuse the situation.

    Interesting if it was Chris Davies decision to take Downton came after the decisions on who would adjudicate which sections - apologies to the WEBBA if that's the case.

    Again, my position on this is that this kind of situation leaves far too much possibility for accusations which could do significant harm unnecessarily (because that situation occurring is unnecessary) so I'm glad that the situation was avoided in the end - regardless of who was responsible for the situation occurring and regardless of whose decision ultimately avoided it.
  19. fartycat

    fartycat Member

    As far as I know there are already several quite serious complaints about the second section results, what difference will a few more spurious ones going to make?

    How far are you going to go back with this 'can't share the box' rule? Is it just on the same weekend or are you really going to demand that adjudicators who also happen to conduct (most of them) can't talk to another adjudicator they might share a box with on another gig for 3 months before the contest!

    I note that Wilton (3rd section) got Derek Broadbent down for a weekend a few weeks ago for a masterclass on their testpiece. But oh my god, Derek also shared the box with Frank Renton (3rd section adjudicator) for the Championship section. Should he have stepped down as well? The whole situation is a nonsense and the West of England should have batted these spurious complaints away.
  20. Tom-King

    Tom-King Well-Known Member

    If the only response you have is a slippery-slope argument then I'm done with it, that's utter rubbish and I'm sure you know it.

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