National Finals 2008 - Championship Test Piece : Concertino for Brass Band

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by Di, Jun 30, 2008.

  1. Di

    Di Active Member

    National Finals 2008
    Championship Section Test Piece

    Concertino for Brass Band
    by Kenneth Downie
  2. brassbandmaestro

    brassbandmaestro Active Member

    Its the title of this test-iece, that annoys me slightly. I always thought that 'concertino', meant to say that it was a lighter form of the more substantial 'concerto'. Its a pity that the work had to be shortened for contest purposes. We may get a full recording of it soon, I hope; being by Kenneth Downie, be rather special.
  3. slidegrease

    slidegrease New Member

    Maybe (he speculates!) Mr Downie changed the title as he too was annoyed about having to shorten his piece to fit contest regulations.

    Would you ask Van Gogh to chop the bottom off a painting to fit on your wall? I agree with what many others have now said in the previous thread, the music is the most important part of the contest and it is a huge dent in brass band credibility if the test piece has had to be altered for time constraints. Make the day longer or include fewer bands.
  4. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Active Member

    Let's not be too precious about this. The Year of the Dragon was originally 4 movements and cut down to 3 for contest purposes. No-one seems to have missed the 4th movement!

    If Mr Downie is happy to shorten his own piece, who are we to argue? If he thought the piece would be spoiled by shortening it, he could have always refused to do so.
  5. Bayerd

    Bayerd Active Member

    Oh but they will now you've told 'em!;)
  6. brassbandmaestro

    brassbandmaestro Active Member

    4th movt to Year of the Dragon, Mr Sparke? I never knew that! Now everyone be asking can you make amends!! I always did think there was something missing in that compositionAlthough I do like it, especially the trombone solo, slow movement.
  7. yorkie19

    yorkie19 Active Member

    My understanding of concertino was that it was a short concerto, rather than a light piece of work. Therefore, logic would suggest that by removing a movement, and shortening the piece, the Concerto for Brass Band would become a Concertino for Brass Band?

    It makes sense to me.

    Anyway, I have to agree with Mr Sparke, if Kenneth Downie is happy to shorten his piece, who are we to argue. Surely, if he wasn't happy, we wouldn't have it as a test piece?

  8. I may be totally wrong here but I'm sure I heard or read somewhere that the extra movement from YOTD was used within 'A London Overture' ?
  9. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Active Member

    You are totally right!
  10. Iain Fleming

    Iain Fleming Member

    Excuse me guys for being the old cynic here (someone has to) but I can well imagine the conversation. Well Mr Downie shorten you work or we will use something else for the National Championship test piece at The Albert Hall.
    Given the choice what would you do?
    And another thing, does 12 minutes not seem a wee bit short for a major contest work?
    I hope nobody takes my comments as criticism of either Kenneth Downie or his music because nothing could be further from the truth.
    There is every chance I suppose this could be the best 12 minutes of brass music every written.
    We will see.

    Iain Fleming
  11. Adamskied

    Adamskied Member

    riginally Posted by budstellabecks
    I may be totally wrong here but I'm sure I heard or read somewhere that the extra movement from YOTD was used within 'A London Overture' ?

    Which Part of London Overture?
  12. Anno Draconis

    Anno Draconis Active Member

    :eek: Absolutely, the piece seems perfectly balanced as it is and is one of my absolute favourites - but maybe nobody missed the 4th movement because they've never had the chance to hear it. I'd be fascinated to hear more about this but we'll end up way off topic!

    Certainly he could - although by doing so he would have denied himself the considerable kudos of having his music used for the finals in the RAH.

    I'm the sure the shortened version of the piece will work perfectly well in its own right; Mr D wouldn't have put his name to it otherwise. My only problem with it is that the piece was great as it was, and the UK audience now won't get the chance to hear it in its entire original version. It's taken 20 years to get Prof. Gregson to write another contest work after the Of Men and Mountains fiasco, yet we haven't moved on from the same restrictions. The structure of the national finals in the top section belongs, imho, to a bygone era. I'd prefer less bands, more music from each band. But that's just me, I'm odd like that ;)
  13. brassbandmaestro

    brassbandmaestro Active Member

    Did'nt Edward Gregson have some irritation when The Natrionals Panel asked him for a shortened version of Trumpets of the Angels?
  14. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    Don't you mean 'Of Men & Mountains'? :confused:
  15. jonesbp

    jonesbp Member

    What a fantastic piece of music.
    Well done Mr Downie - done yourself proud again.:clap:
  16. iRyan

    iRyan Member

    Oh aye, has your band bought the score for it now then, or is there a recording that has been released?
  17. Iain Fleming

    Iain Fleming Member

    I don't know if anyone has started reheasing "Concertino for Brass Band" but I'd be interested in their opinion. We have and I've got to say, the vibs are definitely negative. What a waste of three weeks of my life reheasing this junk. Sorry Mr Downie you get the thumbs down from me for this one!!

    Iain Fleming
    Whitburn Band
  18. yorkie19

    yorkie19 Active Member

    You really aren't enjoying this whole experience are you Iain ;)!

    I have to say that the piece is really growing on me. I liked it enough at the start, but having played it through a few times, it is certainly up there with some of my other favourites (like The Maunsell Forts).

    Speaking of which, can we have that for the Area test piece next year?
  19. brassbandmaestro

    brassbandmaestro Active Member

    I still cant understand why The Maunsell Forts did;nt go down so wel. Not the archtypal test piece I suppoe?
  20. Iain Fleming

    Iain Fleming Member

    Sam, all I can say is you need to get out more. I have had the fortune of having played pieces recently like 'Rococo Variations' and 'Music for Battle Creek' both of which were enjoyable to rehearse. The listener is also an important factor in this and if we can't serve up better fair than this (as a movement) at major contests then the future is grim. Now after saying that, there may be a market for this type of brass music at festivals and the like but not the National Finals in the Albert Hall.

    Iain Fleming

Share This Page