spring festival 2014

Discussion in 'The Adjudicators' Comments' started by ringa, Oct 21, 2013.

  1. ringa

    ringa Member

    not even going to go there yet......................... but has anyone heard any rumours of test pieces for trophy and cup contests?:oops:
  2. Adamskied

    Adamskied Member

    Not decided just yet.

    Let you know soon....lol
  3. ringa

    ringa Member

    you've had a canny track record with Area choices. how sure are you of your suggestions this time?
    cant wait:confused:
  4. Uncle Bryn

    Uncle Bryn Member

    Breath of Souls for the Shield.

    Talk of at least four composite bands and have heard a ridiculous rumour about another band's intention to use the lack of registration rules work for them.

    If you think this is a load or clap trap wait to see if the the test is right and then you can make your mind up about the registration element.
  5. Neillyboy

    Neillyboy Member

    Would be nice to see blitz or something like that for the trophy!!
  6. diddlydoc

    diddlydoc New Member

    Will the announcement be made a week or two early, as the contest date has been moved forward? If so, we could be expecting an announcement anytime?
  7. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Looking at the list of pieces used since the resurrection of the Senior Trophy in 2002, I would suspect that Blitz would be considered a bit hard, although in some lights it could look like a convincing choice, so I certainly wouldn't rule it out. The last 10 years have mostly seen pieces that, while still difficult and originally written for the top level, are not thought to test the best any more (sometimes wrongly - some of these pieces have been set at first section level in the past, where they prompted real struggles).

    [Ignore the pieces used in the previous incarnation of the contest, ending in 1980; at that time the competing bands tended to be from the lower sections, and the set pieces reflect that]

    Leaving aside the odd one out from that list of 12 pieces (Chris Jenkins's new arrangement of Benvenuto Cellini, used in 2011, which I would suspect was intended (as a set piece) more as a remembrance of earlier usage of Frank Wright's arrangement of the same piece), only one recent trophy piece was set when under 10 years old (Martin Ellerby's Chivalry in 2012 - and that was composed 9 years before). Some statistics on the age of the 11 pieces used (i.e. excluding the Jenkins BC):

    Median age at use: 29 years
    Mean age at use: 35.5 years
    Standard deviation of ages: 20.2 years

    So, if that pattern is followed, we'd predict that the 2014 piece will have been written/arranged some time between 1958 and 1999. Only 2 of the 12 pieces chosen have been arrangements, and they were both set in successive years relatively recently, so I would imagine that it will be an original work this time round. Here's a smattering of original works for band that fit those two brackets of standard/perception and age:

    Three Figures - Howells, 1960
    John O'Gaunt - Vinter, 1967 [or indeed, pretty much any other Vinter, although we did all get Vintered to death in 2009, so maybe not]
    A Kensington Concerto - Ball, 1972
    Fantasy for Brass Band - Arnold, 1974
    In Memoriam R.K. - Howarth, 1976
    Cloudcatcher Fells - McCabe, 1985
    The Beacons - Steadman-Allen, 1987
    Maoriana - Butterworth, 1990
    Tallis Variations - Sparke, 1999

    As you can see, it is still quite a wide bracket...
  8. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    So the pieces have been announced.

    Grand Shield: On Alderley Edge
    Senior Cup: English Heritage
    Senior Trophy: Les Francs Juges

    Marking the analysis I made for the Trophy in the previous post... Francs Juges was arranged 1961, so score one there (although 1958-1999 is a very wide bracket, and it is only just inside it, so one whole mark is a bit generous). It's an arrangement, not an original composition, so no score there - this means that in the 5 contests thus far run or scheduled in the 2010s, 3 arrangements will have been used; of these, 2 are Frank Wright arrangements, and the third is an arrangement of a piece that Frank Wright also famously arranged. Contrast this with the 8 contests run in the 2000s, when 8 original pieces were used. LFJ was originally written for the Nationals - score one for a piece that was written for the top level a long time ago - but (I was very surprised to see; I'd completely forgotten) was again used for the top section finals as recently as 2006. In fact, the list of usages of the piece on BBR shows that it has escaped being subject to 'test-piece inflation' almost entirely - so definitely no score there.
  9. cockaigne

    cockaigne Member

    LFJ is a surprising choice, but English Heritage seems well-judged (to coin a phrase). Looking forward to it, particularly as I won't have to play the solo this time around :)
  10. no2taz

    no2taz Member

    Im looking forward to Grand Shield: On Alderley Edge, great piece with lots of good music in it .. he writes a good toon
  11. cornetcheese

    cornetcheese Member

    Does anyone know which new bands have taken up invitations to the Senior Trophy? I know Regent Brass will be there, but that's about it.
  12. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Kidlington will be there
  13. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    If the 4BR rankings as of today are any guide (I have it in my head that they're at least consulted when inviting bands, but don't quote me on that - also, if so, they would have been consulted a few weeks ago, as we received our invite a short while back), then one would expect the following six UK bands to be first in line for invites:
    Zone One (38 )
    Rainford (71)
    Goodwick (84)
    1st Old Boys (87)
    Regent (89)
    Llwydcoed (92)

    Kidlington at 94 are currently 7th in that order, but I did also for personal interest undertake this same task with a slightly earlier set of rankings a month or so ago, finding that we were then 6th.
    ZOB seem an unusual case, in that they were at the Trophy in 2010 and the Cup in 2011, but did not attend in 2012 or 2013; I don't know exactly what that means - whether they don't have room in their calendar for the competition or what - but one would suspect that they won't be taking up a position in 2014 - after all, two successive years' withdrawal would intuitively lead one to expect dropping from the bottom of the hierarchy after starting in the Cup.
    1st Old Boys seem a strange omission in general - they featured regularly in the Shield back in the day, and aren't afraid of crossing the Irish Sea to compete. But they haven't been at Blackpool since they dropped out of the Trophy in 2002.
    Regent we know from Alan's post are attending, and I'd be pretty surprised if Rainford didn't go if invited - though Frank attending his own contest would surely be quite a logistical challenge!
    The two Welsh bands listed there would be very interesting in this setting - Llwydcoed have had a strong year in the 1st section (don't know if they are promoted for 2014?), while Goodwick, as National 2nd Section Champion, are unbeaten in an extraordinary 7 contests going back over a year. By all accounts a young band rapidly musically maturing, entry to the Spring Festival would provide a very interesting benchmark for a band that is evidently without peers at its current national grading.

    Outside those 7, the next in the 4BR listing who weren't included in 2013 are:
    Kirkintilloch Kelvin (100)
    Bournemouth (109)
    Downshire (111)
    Clackmannan (113)
    Markham (120)
    Strata (122)
    Lewis Merthyr (126)
    Drogheda (127) - if ROI is included
    Deiniolen (129)

    I stress that this is in no way an official listing of who has received invites, just some suggestions of likely candidates based on the 4BR rankings. I'd be quite surprised if I saw a new band present next year that wasn't in that list, but that's just personal.

    By the by... For reference, the highest-ranked UK bands according to 4BR not in the various other levels of the contest are:
    Open: Tongwynlais (12) - 8th 2013 Shield.
    Shield: Woodfalls (27) - 1st 2013 Cup.
    Cup: Zone One (38 ) - as above. Highest ranked band in the Trophy is City of Cardiff (52) - 15th 2013 Trophy.
    Trophy: Zone One (38 ) - as above.

    and the lowest-ranked UK bands in the various levels as of 2013 are:
    Open: Desford (32) - 11th 2013
    Shield: Co-operative Funeralcare North West (104) - 9th 2013
    Cup: Wakefield Metropolitan (157) - 17th 2013
    Trophy: Easington (13th 2013), Hatfield (16th 2013), Meltham (19th 2013) (all >200)

    Intriguing to see the degrees of overlap, and how a national ranking can diverge from results in one contest.
  14. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    And, I forgot to add, have only contested outside of Wales 6 times in history that BBR knows of - 5 of those being National Finals events - 4 of those being the last 4 years successively.
  15. Statto

    Statto Member

    Not too dissimilar if the brassstats.com rankings are used:)

    47 Zone One Brass
    65 Rainford
    68 Regent Brass
    79 City of Cardiff (Melingriffith)
    85 Bournemouth Concert Brass
    97 Wantage Silver
  16. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    I have it in my head that the 4BR list is consulted, at least informally, which is why I used it... brassstats are more accurate, IMO, as you know!

    City of Cardiff and Wantage were both in the bottom six at the trophy last year, so presumably won't be back this year.
  17. Statto

    Statto Member

    Ah, hadn't twigged that they didn't get back in straight away. In that case, the 6 would be:

    47 Zone One Brass
    65 Rainford
    68 Regent Brass
    85 Bournemouth Concert Brass
    99 Newmilns & Galston
    106 Staines Brass
  18. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Getting off topic here, but it's interesting to see a sizeable discrepancy between 4BR and BrassStats over Newmilns and Staines rankings, with them currently sitting at 158 and 179 in the 4BR list. Does that perhaps mostly reflect different decay constants used? Just punting in the dark here.

    I think it illustrates quite nicely how these things unavoidably become less accurate than needed at the ranking zone where the population of bands becomes numerous (i.e. from about 80-100 downwards).
  19. horndevil

    horndevil New Member

    I think you may have missed the slight leaning of 4BR rankings towards any band from Wales, preferable with an unpronounceable name. Any band with links to Wales, like having a second cousin from Barry, or having members with a slight penchant for more attractive ovine friends.
  20. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    Hi Ian. What you refer to is just the standard propensity of ranking systems for points to 'trickle down' in areas where there are strong bands. There are some truly great bands in Wales, so the bands on the next tier down pick up points from competing around them that bands of the same standard in weaker areas don't have the chance to compete for. You see the same with Yorkshire and the North West.

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