Are Dep's Necessary?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by eanto, Aug 24, 2008.

  1. eanto

    eanto Member

    Just thinkin' Your principal player isn't available..... Do you really have to advertise for a dep? Can't the No2's step up to the plate and perform? Added bonus is to save a bit of money perhaps :rolleyes:
  2. magicdave

    magicdave New Member

    Erm, I think that view is a little simplistic. It depends on the band and the players. I know of several "No. 2s" who would do this very easily but also know many who would hate the prospect! Also, I think that the whole Principal / No.2 debate makes it sound like the No.2 role is a stepping stone to the top job which it isn't always and is often a very important and valuable contribution in its own right. I would vote that players always sit in the seats they sit in for rehearsals, however, I expect to be shot down in flames as this thread continues!
  3. eanto

    eanto Member

    Good call MagicDave. The standard of the band does matter. I'm going with a more slightly basic concept though, difficult call, yes.
  4. Daisy Duck

    Daisy Duck Member

    In my band, if I was away, any of the front row players could quite easily sit on the end. They're all strong, confident players. We tend to share the solos out anyway.

    But I know of other bands where the principal cornet isn't as lucky as I am and the other front row players would panic and not be able to do it. This is often where the PC insists on doing every single solo so the other players have never had a chance to have a go.
  5. towse1972

    towse1972 Active Member

    I wouldn't fancy the pressure thank you very much.
  6. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    I'm not a front row player, in fact I'd expressly ask to go on the back row if someone tried to stick me there. However, I have played in a few different bands, and have seen some situations where one of the front row is the "usual" back up, and takes some of the solos to give the principal cornet a rest. Also something I've seen is the rep covering the principal, and someone else covering rep. It depends on the band, the players and the person in charge. Different people have different strengths. Someone might be a brilliant ensemble player, but not really be interested in solo playing, or have the bottle for it.

    If it was me, I'd rather use someone who's used to playing in the band to cover the principal cornet, and get a dep somewhere further down the line or on rep/backrow. It's too easy to muck everything up if you're not used to the conductor/rest of the band.
  7. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    Not by me! From a MD's point of view, it seems simple logic that if 1st xyz player is missing , and you get a dep in to play 1st xyz part, then you have one player reading parts they're not used to playing. If 1st xyz player is missing, and you move 2nd xyz player up to play 1st xyz parts then get a dep in to play 2nd xyz parts, then you have two players reading parts they're not used to playing, and double the potential for error.

    I'm aware that other considerations might affect this logic, and to a point a lot depends on the context. An obvious example might be a concert where the band is "running out" a test piece for an upcoming contest. If one of the regular players is away, there seems to me to be no sense in having another player in the band playing a part they're not going to be playing "on the day". Far better to directly replace the missing player/part.

    However on a routine Summer/Sunday-Afternoon-in-the-park/Village-fair type job, then if a player is keen to "have a go" then it might make sense to allow it. But at the end of the day if you care about having all the parts properly covered, you're still going to have to get a dep in somewhere along the way, so it's not really an issue of cost-saving in any case. Even in the given example where a PC is missing, so the 2nd/3rd/4th (wo)men down all move up a chair, I would still normally expect to find a replacement 4th Solo cornet, although I recognise that not all bands would bother.
  8. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    I don't think there can be a hard and fast answer to a queston like that, as it will vary from one band to another, and possibly also according to the occasion concerned.

    In general terms, I have always believed that. if the first player is missing, then the next one down should step up to fill the gap, whether in practice of in performance. When playing horn several years back this was the usual practice, so that if the solo horn was working on practice night, which happened a couple of times a month, then I would step up to solo. I have also stepped up from bass to first trom, when the second player was reluctant to do so, as well as switching from BBb to EEb as required.

    For a more prestigious occasion, and particularly in the event of a principal cornet or euphonium being absent, I should say the decision should rest initially with the number 2: if they are happy to stand in, then they should have the opportunity to do so; if not, then invite a guest principal, making it clear that is the case, and maybe making the most of the occasion by featuring the guest player in a solo spot.
  9. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    Actually, now I come to think of it - what do bands do when the sop/flugel/bass trom can't make it? My current band has a "cornet player" who is really a flugel player, and can stand in (sort of) if our flugel isn't around, but that's probably not all that common, and most people can't just pick up a sop and play it.... I guess these are probably seats that a band is more likely to get a dep in for, rather than have someone switch to a different instrument AND part.
  10. David Pegram

    David Pegram Member

    Spot on think that ends this thread.
  11. Crazysop

    Crazysop Member

    At various points over the last 10 years in my band there have been 2 other sop players and 2 other flugle players seated amongst the front and back rows. Tell you what, I didn't dare be absent!
  12. leisa

    leisa Active Member

    I would have thought that the rep was the next person should the principal not be there? Makes more sense than the 2nd man doing it to me
  13. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    I've been a dep-booker for a couple of bands, and my starting point was always to replace the missing player with a dep.... if you bump someone up or swap people around, you're just increasing the number of people playing unfamiliar parts and therefore increasing the risk of things getting wobbly. (pretty much what Gareth's said too).

    The only exceptions for me would be if there was a specific person after an opportunity to try a different part/instrument (and capable of doing it) or for a gig where it wasn't necessary to field a full band anyway.
  14. leisa

    leisa Active Member

    whoohoo you're back!!
  15. Accidental

    Accidental Supporting Member

    greetings fellow Cumberlander! :D
    I still lurk, just don't post much...its tricky fitting it in without the boss noticing :wink:
  16. HBB

    HBB Active Member

    Ooh eer missus.