Strangest Concert Venue

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by groovy, May 21, 2005.

  1. groovy

    groovy Active Member

    Mine is dressed as cowgirl on the back of a moving lorry. What's yours?
  2. The Cornet King

    The Cornet King Active Member

    Armley Jail in Leeds, Category A top security prison. Man that was weird but not wonderful. All our gear had to be checked to make sure we weren't brining in anything for the prisoners, drugs etc so instruments had to be searched.
    We weren't allowed to make eye contact with the prisoners, most of whom were murderers, sex offenders etc.

    Not pleasant. At the end one of the prisoners nicked something from where we were playing.

    Horrible venue that.
  3. sterlingsop

    sterlingsop Member

    Playing Christmas carols on the top of an open top bus in Ardwick, Ancoats and Collyhurst in the snow. Talk about glamorous!

    And for once is wasn't one of Uncle Bob's jobs.
  4. sparkling_quavers

    sparkling_quavers Active Member

    :|:|:|:| I would not be too happy if our band manager booked us in somewhere like that!
  5. The Cornet King

    The Cornet King Active Member

    Well needless to say the announcement of that job was met with mixed response! Not something i would ever recommend to anybody!
    I can't imagine ever doing a worse job than that to be honest...however, i'm sure somebody somewhere probably has! :confused:
  6. tinytimp

    tinytimp Member

    Mine has got to be practically in the tropical flowerbeds in the Glasshouse of the National Botanic Gardens of Wales. A tiny little path/patio thing just isn't going to fit a whole orchestra!

    The conductor had this whole interactive thing going on, and while we were playing the last piece (1812 - surprise surprise) he'd provided the audience with paper bags to blow up and bang to join in at the end. Needless to say, they went mad and the things kept going off through the whole piece, even the nice quiet opening (covered all the mistakes though)!
  7. ju33les

    ju33les Member

    Aw Rach..... there goes that idea I had!!:( ;)
  8. HorniKaz

    HorniKaz Supporting Member

    I played with my school band many many moons ago at Strangeways! :eek:

    Thankfully it was the prison officers club. On that night, they had Maxine Barry as well. Who? you all ask. She won the 1st Stars In Their Eyes as Shirley Bassey.
  9. ju33les

    ju33les Member

    :biggrin: :biggrin: :biggrin:
    That must have been scary enough!!!
  10. bigmamabadger

    bigmamabadger Active Member

    Not a strange venue as such, but we used to play in the sergeants mess at RAF Benson. One time the bass trombonist and I got lost trying to get back to the carpark and ended up with the strippers who were booked to come on after us. That was an eye-opener. Bass trombonist enjoyed himself though.

  11. sterlingsop

    sterlingsop Member

    For hairy gigs, I think my worst was the Ypsilanti state mental hospital when the North Manchester Music Centre toured the US and Canada in 1987.

    In terms of harrowing experiences, nothing comes as close as when I played a concert at Prestwich hospital when I was a child.
  12. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    I reprise an earlier entry I made about the WORST - also the strangest..

    The worst venue for a gig that I played in was a farm in the middle of nowhere. Harlow took the gig at short notice when another local band pulled out.

    We didn't get paid for the gig, but we did it as our conductor felt it would be a good opportunity to get ourselves seen in public.

    When we got to the farm, it was clear that (a) there would only be farmers there; (b) there were only about 20; (c) only the farm owner was local; and (d) the farm owner wanted us to play in a barn far away from the entrance but didn't want us to drive cars across his fields to get our gear there.

    When we got to the barn, there were no chairs. The farmer said we didn't need them as we had legs.

    In the end, he provided four bales of hay for the tuba players to sit on, but everybody else had to stand.

    To round of a very poor day, the event had a host who was about as funny as a car crash. He came up to me, kept putting his hand on the slide of my trombone whilst I was playing, despite being alerted to Acton's Rectum, and then when we'd finished the number, asked (over the air via his microphone) why I was in a bad mood.

    I said that it was, in the main, because the idiot farmer hadn't provided chairs.

    "Oh!" he says, "that's not good. Never mind. Let's have three chairs for the Harlow Band!! Hip hip..."

    He's only alive because John Stradling and my little brother restrained me.

    Needless to say, we never back.
  13. Craigsav83

    Craigsav83 Active Member

    I did a fundraiser with Dalmellington a number of years ago, playing in several places in the village, including...

    On the pavement... (not so odd)
    On a road next to a single house in the middle of nowhere (in the rain)
    In someones livingroom (yes... really! the basses got to the sofa first)
    As a single file down a narrow hallway in an old folks complex.

    It was certainly different! :)
  14. ju33les

    ju33les Member

    My mum was a senior night nurse there for years...I sometimes went along when she couldn't find a babysitter........
    Says it all really...........................

    PS I also played there as well with Eccles many moons ago...but i suppose i was one of the family!!:biggrin:
  15. HorniKaz

    HorniKaz Supporting Member

    I too have played at Prestwich Hospital, had completely forgotten. Or did I push it to the back of my mind on purpose. Did my one & only solo there. Again, with school.

    Another one I've done, they're all coming back to me now, was on the top of Holcombe Hill in Bury. We had to get the timps up there! What joy. Proper hike up!! ;)
  16. ju33les

    ju33les Member

    I have threatened on numerous occasions to play the Last post on Remembrance Sunday at the side of our flagpole at work.Maybe someone would like to volunteer,seeing as it wouldn't sound as good on horn of Eb variety as on a likkle cornety thing.;)
  17. nickjones

    nickjones Active Member

    Odd Places

    A couple of years ago the Beaumaris Band did a job at an old nepolionic war fort on the coast outside of Caernarfon ( Fort Belan ) with Simone Rebello as guest soloist...
    all seemed normal , outside job on a summers evening when loads of people in purple toga's came towards us as we were unloading the gear from the band van , the toga wearers threw rose petals on us and were waxing lyrical about how good it was going to be. did the job and left asap...Bizzare!!!!!
  18. brasscrest

    brasscrest Active Member

    On a moving flatbed trailer, at night, with penlights taped to the bills of our caps.
  19. ronnie_the_lizard

    ronnie_the_lizard Active Member

    Colwyn Borough Band (almost) did a gig at a mental hospital in Penmaenmawr one year (mid 80s ?).

    We turned up, set chairs/perc up, warmed up instruments, took to the stage and the conductor lifted his baton ready to start when one of the staff members came running in yelling that we had to get out as there had been a bomb threat.

    Then we stood outside in the freezing cold for an hour and a half waiting for the all clear to go and get our instruments.

    No bomb found, and I find it difficult to understand why anyone would have wanted to blow up a mental hospital or a pretty poor fourth section band (except perhaps for the conductor, or the players, or, come to that, anyone within listening distance).
  20. ronnie_the_lizard

    ronnie_the_lizard Active Member

    Oh and just thought of another, again with Colwyn Borough Band.

    Turned up one sunny summer Sunday Evening to play at our regular weekly concert on the local bandstand - only to find that the council had knocked down the bandstand without telling the band.....

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