Harrogate test pieces

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Dave Payn, Sep 7, 2004.

  1. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Prompted by a pm session with Stephen Clapton, I don't wish to appear sycophantic as I know the composer frequents this forum, but it's so common for complaints to come out when a set test piece doesn't come up to scratch for different individuals, that it's nice to be able to do the reverse when the reverse is true! Judging by my own reaction (of course!) and the reaction of many at Fulham Brass Band, with Harrogate looming this weekend, I think it's fair to say that a certain P. Sparke has come up with a winner with his Four Noble Truths. Though I realise it wasn't (I think) written specifically as a contest piece, it has, nevetheless, proved a hit with many in the band I've spoken to.

    Sure, some of the reaction was 'Wasn't sure about it at first', but the 'at first' tells its own story, namely that they like it now. One of those rare pieces set for a lower section contest that's as enjoyable to play as it is to listen to. Although I won't be with Fulham for much longer, I do hope they include the work in any forthcoming concerts they embark upon.
  2. stephen_clapton

    stephen_clapton New Member

    I think it is fair to say that everybody I have spoken to so far seems to like their piece, which can only be good for all the competing bands this weekend. Well done to the selectors!
  3. Red Elvis

    Red Elvis Active Member

    We were a bit "not sure" about "Chaucer's tunes"(Michael Ball) at first but have really taken to it over the last weeks.It suits the sound of our band well and we hope to give a good account of ourselves with it.Regardless of results though , its been good to work on and I've enjoyed it - to my mind this is as much the purpose of a contest piece as the actual end result , and possibly more important in the long run.
  4. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Well-Known Member

    Dear Dave,

    Glad you are enjoying the piece. Just to put the records straight, it WAS written as a test-piece (look above the title!) and was commissioned by the Dutch Nationals last year - one of FOUR new pieces they commissioned for all the sections. Perhaps we should learn a lesson from our Dutch colleagues!
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2004
  5. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    There were initially some rumblings from some quarters about how 'easy' Chaucer's Tunes is. It has been interesting to see how these rumblings have died out since people started to get into the music.

    Too often, people try to 'diss' a test piece for no other reason than that the music is unfamiliar. Personally, I think the last few test pieces we have played have been fantastic. They have helped to stretch the band, have been musically interesting and have given us all something to work on. Most of them have even been playable in concerts - in part if not in whole.

    Well done to the selection committee. I think you're getting it right.
  6. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Oops.... Mr McLaughlin, can I borrow your baton, my white stick's broken..... ;-) :)
  7. Di B

    Di B Member

    I agree with Dave that the Four Noble Truths is an enjoyable piece to play.
    Less than a week to go and I am not sick of playing it yet - that's saying something!

    The second movement also reminds me of my boss on a hectic day.....

    I might even venture into the hall before the bar to listen to the other sections if the pieces are enjoyable!
  8. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    It'll cost you......
  9. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    p.s. that's not some sort of veiled threat or anything... just a comment on the charges for bandspersons to hear other bands this weekend.....
  10. White stick available Mr P as I've a shiny new one for the contest!! Has there been any more talk about the charging of band members to hear the results?
  11. em_d

    em_d Member

    i love the 3rd and 4th movements in the 4 noble truths. good luck to everyone else by the way!
  12. ScreamingSop

    ScreamingSop Member

    yeah good luck
    what do peeps think of our test (1st section) King of Elflands Daughter
    its good, i like it but a few o fthe tunes are very similar throughout the piece but it like film music and really atmospheric! you can imagine what is going on in the story as you are listening/playing it
    not sure if everyone will like it tho, it will be another Coventry Varitaions, you either love it or Hate it!!!
    people should come and have a listen to this very different test piece!!!
  13. geordiecolin

    geordiecolin Active Member

    Less than a week til the contest and still to be convinced that Chaucer's Tunes is actually any good.

    Sorry not one for me i'm afraid (although the carol bit is ok), it all seems to have echoes of other pieces in it - The chase bit sounds like the last movement of Narnia Suite, there is a passage in the bass part that IS clog dance and the whole thing just doesn't sound very original to me really.

    Sorry Micheal Ball, but it just doesn't do owt for me!
  14. Andy_Euph

    Andy_Euph Active Member

    Being someone that was none too happy when the pieces were announced I must say I think that Chaucers Tunes is ok, some nice bits in it and I think it will definately be a good tester on sunday, lots of sticky points
  15. davethehorn

    davethehorn New Member

    Quite right - Four Noble Truths is an excellent piece to play and to listen to thats if we can afford to listen to it being played at Harrogate.

    Am I the only one upset that no reduced price bandsman's tickets were available?

    Back to the music - the Fourth section has had a good year in 2004 - Partita was also excellent piece of music, but then again I would say that because we also qualified for the finals!

    Keep up the good work selection panel - don't mess it up for the regionals 2005.

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