First Female Players

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by SilverBrass, Feb 19, 2008.

  1. T Winch

    T Winch Member

    My sister Val was the first female player in Sunderland Millfield SA band
  2. Highams

    Highams Member

    Hanwell had many young ladies in its ranks. Back in the 60's Barbara Stone was on solo cornet, then conductor as well. Eileen Lock (O'Sullivan then) was also on cornet from her school days.

    Later we had both Lynda Nicholson and Elaine Wolff as lead cornets working together plus Beverly Vaughan on solo horn with sister Nicola on cornet.

    Others included Barbara Mealin (principal cornet), Janine Tunks, Maggie Croft, Karen Shackleton (cornets), Karen Williams (solo horn) & Linda Hobbs, tuba.

    Probably many more I've left out too.


    winning Leicester contest with Ian Johnson; Bands/?action=view&current=leics1.jpg
  3. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    I think KSB had it's first female player in the early 1970's. She (cannot recall her first name) was the eldest daughter of front row cornet player Ted Barker and sister of John Barker (he later moved to Rhodian Brass and subsequently became a professional trumpet player.)

    I think she went on to be a music teacher.

    Not really much of a problem to the band at the time as it consisted of about 10 old guys and a couple of whippersnapers (me included). Today the band has equal numbers of female and male players.
  4. stueyb

    stueyb New Member

    I've found it very interesting reading through the various comments about the 'first' female players. particularly as the MD of the original all-female brass band, Trinity Girls. They were formed in 1959 and began contesting (I believe) in the 1960s.

    Members of the band will tell you that they raised a number of eyebrows at the time (1960s & 1970s) and did so for some time as they were the only band with a full complement of female players!!

    The band works very hard to retain this unique status, even against the odds in the current banding climate where both male and female players are hard to come by.
  5. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    Come to think of it, a couple of girls from Trinity Girls Band were in the NYBB in the early 1960's.
    A BBb player called Dorothy Johnson, and cornet player called Madeline Aspinal.
    - Wilkie
    PS. I think we contested against TGB at Thameside last year.
  6. paddo

    paddo Member

    not sure who was the first female player but I do remember the first thing i noticed when I went for an audition at Brodsworth in the early 80's. The female audition part was out of this world, unplayable but the male one was just a few long notes!! not sure they would get away with that today???

    Up until then there had been none at brody, I know there was one just after that on cornet and she played at aceprint shortly after finishing.

    Joss, my wife would have shoved it right where the sun don't shine! and right too.....
  7. steve butler

    steve butler Active Member

    This jogged another long lost memory for me. A girl who played principal cornet for my school band at Harrogate (Shirley Ellis I think) who also played at NYBBGB went on to play with the Ivy Benson Band (all girl Dance Band) back in the late 60's.
  8. Kerwintootle

    Kerwintootle Member

    That audition sheet has been pinned up on nearly every bandroom wall I have ever seen, it's hilarious. The female part is deliberately impossible and the male part is the hymn tune Abide with Me. Fantastic! :p
  9. iancwilx

    iancwilx Well-Known Member

    Barbara Stone (Nee Chew) was also a tutti Solo Cornet with the NYBBGB in the '60's.
    I think she originally came from Dorchester.
    - Wilkie
  10. satchmo shaz

    satchmo shaz Active Member

    Me and a girl called Julie Harcourt were the 1st girls in Ransomes band back in 1985 I was 3rd "man" down and she was 4th, and we took a bit of stick!!! but we gave it back too!!:clap:
  11. Kerwintootle

    Kerwintootle Member

    Surely not Shazza!? You being so demure and wallflower like?! Only kidding. Missing you! See you soon.


  12. Hornblower RN

    Hornblower RN Member

    We had a girl playing with Ogmore Valley Silver back in the late 40s when I joined the band. Her name was Joan Gould....her father Harry played on the top end. She was the first female to play in the band as far as I know.
  13. Jacob Larsen

    Jacob Larsen Member

    Not quite true... As a member YES.... But Lynda Nicholson played principal with Black Dyke Mills Band on The 2nd Gregson recording :)
  14. Anonymous_user

    Anonymous_user New Member

    Lynda was not a full time member....she was just helping out on that CD. Lesley was the first Full time member.
  15. SilverBrass

    SilverBrass New Member

    Any idea who were the first in the likes of Cory/Leyland etc? More recent I assume.

    AEHOWGATE Member

    Leyland's first female was a fine percussionist called Sarah. Can't recall her last name tho!
  17. weenie

    weenie Member

    If I remember it was Sarah Wood (not that I'm a boc or anything)! Good percussionist she was too, wonder what she's doing now?

    I'm all for females in banding, though there is a distinctly different atmosphere in all male bands. ;-)
  18. Kerwintootle

    Kerwintootle Member

    The mind boggles. lol
  19. weenie

    weenie Member

    Thanks Alex!! lol. I'll just go and find myself a shovel!!!
  20. omega56

    omega56 Member

    Whilst playing with the York Railway Institute Band in the late sixties early seventies The principal Cornet player was a Lady called Grace Pratt (formerley Dinsdale) who I believe was the first female to play for this band and Yorks other prominent band Rowntree Works band back in the mid 1950s

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