While it would be great to hear others views (including players), I thought I'd toss in my two-pence worth. I was able to see fantastic concerts from Cory...errr...Buy as You View, Foden's, Brighouse and Dyke. Them weekends celebration highlighted many of the works of Gregson, Howarth and McCabe. It was nice to sit back and listen to some of the 2004-5 test pieces (Dances and Arias and Cloucatcher Fells) without feeling the need inside to rate the bands performances (they were of course spectacular). It was also great hearing some of major solo works that I don't normally get the chance to hear because they are 1) too difficult and 2) too long for some audiences to stay attentive for...However, I very much enjoyed the Euphonium solo by David Childs and James Gourlay's rendition of Gregson's Tuba Concerto. Last years RNCM Brass Festival was quite incredible. I thought it would be difficult to top...but this year was even better. Although I didn't get to attend Friday's festivities (work), I think the addition of the low brass day and the clinics throughout the weekend added the missing touch for a full fledged, "proper" brass festival. Being a low brass player I attended both Steven Mead and James Gourlays masterclasses. I keep expecting that one of these times I will think a masterclass is a waste of time because they are all going to say the same thing anyways...right? However, what I found from Mr. Mead and Mr. Gourlay were not only a few different ideas, but many different, fresh perspectives on the common ideas good music teachers try to poind into our heads. I can only imagine that the master classes from Mr. Webster and Ms. Howie were equally as good. The Brass Herald also sponsored a forum discussing the current state of brass playing in the UK. Unfortunatley, there didn't appear enough time to address all the issues raised. Hoever, because of all the interest, we were assured there would be another one in the near future. The World of Brass stand was once again appreciated (as I made my monthly 'donation' to the cause ) and the foyer music was an added touch. This was really quite an intense and educational weekend and I've already marked my calendar for next year. As a side note...the weekend was also very socially fulfilling as Supa-Laura visited from the States for the Festival...I got to meet tMPer Bryan Kelly and Nuke came in from Liverpool. Funny/ scary moment to close with. We were in a taxi on our way back to our hotel after a curry and the taxi driver screeches to a halt as it almost hit a not-quite-sober person crossing the street (no zebra or panda crossings in sight). The pedestrian beats on the taxi window and yells at the taxi driver something like "B****y taxi in the middle of the road!!!"