I went to the RNCM on the Friday and Saturday and thought it was excellent. Attendances seem to be up on previous years and the whole atmosphere seemed very positive. Highlight for me was BAYV immense performance of the Gaia Symphony. Moving music and staggering playing from all concerned. Bousfield and Haardenberger were terrific as expected. Another little highlight for me was sitting next to two guys who must have been 70 years +: they enthusiastically applauded Grimethorpes performance of 'Aubade'. They were telling me in the break that it was they were traditionalists and this was their first time at the RNCM. They also said that they found the music complicated but really enjoyed the experience of hearing something new and different to their ears. For music of this uncompromising nature (as opposed to traditional band repertoire), it was great to see some of the 'older' generation accepting and appreciating music that was a little out of the ordinary. The whole festival is about listening to something a little different and pushing back the boundaries - maybe my generation can learn something from these older guys who embraced something totally different. Was disappointed that I could not make either YBS or Dyke's concert as the programmes looked superb. Did you go? If so, what did you think?