Onchan Silver Band is very happy to announce that they will be holding a “Brass Celebration” concert in the Villa Marina, Douglas, on Sunday 30th September at 7.30pm. The concert will mark their 70th anniversary and the band is thrilled to announce that they have secured the services of the Championship Section B.T. Band, which began life as the Stockport Telephone Band in 1967, to perform jointly at the concert. This year being B.T. Band’s 40th anniversary makes the concert a double celebration. “The bands will perform separately in the first half under the baton of their respective musical directors Paul Dunderdale and Michael Fowles, and jointly to conclude the concert” band press officer Grant Taylor said; “in addition to this, B.T. have had a piece of music specially commissioned for their anniversary and we are honoured that the premiere will be performed at the concert, an exclusive for the band and the musical community of the island”. Grant explained: “the piece is entitled “The Enigma Machine” and has been written by Paul Lovatt-Cooper, the principal percussionist of the world-famous Black Dyke Mills Band, who visited the island earlier in the year in conjunction with the 120th birthday of Douglas Town Band. Everyone at Onchan Silver Band is very excited about the concert which we hope will prove to be a memorable evening’s entertainment. “To make the occasion even more special” Grant continued “I am delighted to be able to announce that our guests of honour for the evening will be Mr Gordon Astill and his wife Sheila; this will be the first time they have attended a band event since they parted company back in 2002. Mr Astill notched up and incredible 50 years service with the band, with 44 of them as musical director, and his outstanding achievement and longevity will never be forgotten. It is not an exaggeration to say that if it wasn’t for him there would be no Onchan Silver Band today and we hope his presence, along with Mrs Astill, who served as the band’s secretary for many years, will make the night an unforgettable one. Mrs Astill’s father was also chairman and later president of the band so their ties to us are undeniable. “The connection with the B.T. Band stems from Michael Fowles first visit to the Island to adjudicate the brass classes of the Manx Music Festival in 2002; the band asked him to return to give a workshop weekend which he has since done on several occasions, each being very successful.” Grant concluded “we can promise the audience a superb evening’s entertainment from both bands, with a diverse selection of music ranging from Wagner to up-to-date film scores and the band are looking forward to the event tremendously.” Tickets are on sale at the Villa/Gaiety box office now, priced at £12.50 and are available online at www.gov.im/villagaiety. The band also has a comprehensive website at www.onchansilverband.org containing articles, up to date news and photographs of the band. Any queries relating to the band itself should be addressed to secretary/press officer Grant Taylor on 480461 or e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.