Dinnington Colliery Band - doing fine!

Discussion in 'Bandroom News - User Submitted' started by Jack E, Oct 31, 2018.

  1. Jack E

    Jack E Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure plenty of you (like me) watched that series on TV, 'A Band for Britain' - and wondered if they would sustain a comeback from their long decline down to a handful of players. Something 2nd Tenor put on another post reminded me about that series, so I did an internet search on Dinnington, to see how they were doing.

    I'm delighted to see that the band is doing very well, with the following achievements:
    1. they now have 50 band members;
    2. they put on 100 performances last year, backed up by 1,000 hours of rehearsals;
    3. in the last 5 years, they've had 8 wins in contests;

    and they've made Sue Perkins their President!

    Which just goes to show how a band which appeared to be on the brink of folding can - with persistent determination - pull itself up by its own bootstraps and make a grand comeback. I'm sure Sue Perkins would agree that whatever she put into the band in those few months would still have come to nothing if the existing band members hadn't put in the long term effort to back it up and put the band on a long term sound footing.

    Good on yer, Dinnington! :)
     
  2. 4th Cornet

    4th Cornet Active Member

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    It would be interesting to know how much of that turnaround is because of direct and subsequent publicity and awareness from the TV series.

    My guess would be that it's considerable and unfortunately not every depleting band (or any other similar type of organisation) is able to get a prime time(?) TV programme to promote them.

    Hopefully someone from the band will be able to prove my thoughts wrong :)
     
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  3. Jack E

    Jack E Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure that the burst of publicity (which must have been considerable) was a great help in raising local awareness of the band in particular, and brass playing in general, but I'm certain that without sustained effort on the part of band members after that publicity had faded out, Dinnington would not be where they are now.
     
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  4. 4th Cornet

    4th Cornet Active Member

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    Apparently it hasn't faded out, otherwise you wouldn't have researched the band and raised this thread.
     
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  5. GER

    GER Active Member

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    Afraid it's not all good news, whilst they are ok they are short of players, especially in the cornet and bass sections
     
  6. Jack E

    Jack E Well-Known Member

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    Actually, I didn't pick up on publicity; I'm sure that, outside the brass band movement, most people have forgotten the media coverage of that time - after all, it was screened 8 years ago. As I said in my first post, what prompted me to look at how they were doing was the mention of them by 2nd Tenor on another (unrelated) thread.
     
  7. Jack E

    Jack E Well-Known Member

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    1,054
    But surely you could say the same of many bands, GER - one I can think of in particular has been trying to fill an empty seat for 5 years. All the same, considering where Dinnington was at in 2010, for them still to be holding together and putting on concerts at all is a remarkable achievement.

    FWIW, that's my opinion, anyway.
     
  8. 4th Cornet

    4th Cornet Active Member

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    In the other thread 2nd tenor is directly referencing the TV show so I very much doubt you would be researching or discussing them without their TV appearance.

    I appreciate and admire your encouragement and support for tenacity to keeping bands alive, but Dinnington are an exceptional case with a once in a banding lifetime publicity boost.
     
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  9. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

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    Oh dear, I seem to have inadvertently put the ‘Cat amongst the Pigeons’.

    The Band for Britain series is, I think, a very interesting serious of documentaries about real life banding. OK, it might be altered in ways for TV use and I feel certain that there’s a lot more about things at Dinnington than meets the eye. My reservations aside I think it interesting to see how things were turned around for them and how they reacted internally. Certainly there was displayed, in one of the episodes, conflict between winning today and managing a band for the long term.

    I’m firmly of the view that you grow a band from learners and work at keeping your members. I’ve certainly moved between a few Bands but still firmly believe in loyalty. New faces that happily walk through the Bandroom door today may well just as happily jump ship tomorrow; in contrast home grown talent, people with a sense of community and belonging to a group, is much more likely to stay indefinitely, grow and contribute. That’s my observation, but the MD and Committee have got to be good too.

    Bands do go through ups and downs and, to me, it doesn’t feel quite right to be discussing people and events at Dinnington too closely. Of course one has to accept that having agreed to be on TV they effectively agreed to have the eyes of the world upon them. Some interesting things to learn from the Videos though (all on YouTube) and the Brass Band Results site gives some interesting detail too.

    Edit.
    I did find one comment from BD’s conductor particularly interesting, something along the lines of suggesting to a player that they look in a mirror and ask themselves why people had left the band. I’d need to re-watch that first video again but strong personalities can keep a band together and can do the reverse too. That’s not intended to be judgemental but merely an observation and an invitation to question how a band might find itself with reduced numbers.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2018
  10. 2nd tenor

    2nd tenor Well-Known Member

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    Unless someone from that area prompts them I doubt that anyone from Dinnington will comment here, pity in a way. From a selfish perspective I’d like to hear of their troubles and how they worked through them, but really that’s their business and despite hoping to learn from their troubles it’s perhaps not right to delve into them.
     
  11. Euphonium Lite

    Euphonium Lite Active Member

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    Location:
    Dereham, Norfolk
    Ive bumped up against Dinnington several times in recent years. One of my best mates played with them (and still helps them out) and Ive also competed against them several times since their demotion back to Section 3

    I do know that they are currently having to rebuild a bit and include several of their training band members in the senior outfit - most if not all of their contest wins are also in the past, mainly under Jonathan Beatty, who is now the MD at Hade Edge.

    I know there are some current and also ex members that have posted on the forum in recent times and I think its perhaps more pertinent for them to comment on the current situation and whether its perhaps working or not, but in terms of the original post I think they still get a boost from their appearances on TV.

    At the end of the day all bands have ups and downs, and Dinnington are no different to that. The programme was a great insight into banding away from the top of the top section although Im sure the TV company will have helped with instruments as well as the change of uniform. - something that most bands dont have the benefit of.
     
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  12. GER

    GER Active Member

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    170
    That was my point, as you say, they are having to rebuild a bit, they lost a few players to university. In the interim they are having to rely on dep's a bit, especially on cornet and bass-how do I know?. I'm one of the deps.
    I wasn't around when Sue Perkins was there, so cannot comment, all I know is their current situation which is as described above. They've just appointed a new MD, hopefully he will help turn things around.
     
  13. Matthew

    Matthew Active Member

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    430
    Location:
    West Yorkshire
    I helped out Dinnington (with Jonathan conducting) a few years back in various contests on BBb (inc. the finals in Cheltenham) - a thoroughly lovely and fantastic group of people, with great ethos and attitudes who made me feel very welcome. :)
     
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