Who has a quintet as part of their band and why?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by TheMusicCompany, Feb 18, 2008.

  1. TheMusicCompany

    TheMusicCompany Supporting Member


    Whilst reflecting on the future business developments of The Music Company, it struck me that quintets and ensembles seem to be an increasing occurrence as a sub-set of the members' brass band.

    I was wondering, how many bands out there also include a quintet or ensemble and what were the reasons behind setting them up?

    Perhaps it's simply for the enjoyment of a different sound, or perhaps it was for practical reasons to be able to take on smaller bookings on behalf of the band that are more cost effective for an ensemble to perform, or perhaps it helps certain players to improve their playing in the band and is used as a development 'tool'.

    It's just simple curiosity as to what prompted their formation and to get a clearer perspective on how many actually exist out there.

    I look forward to being enlightened. :)

    The Music Company
    Tel: 08700 636 796
  2. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    I play in quintets (and other chamber brass ensembles) regularly with people that I also play with in bands - but in no ways are the smaller groups associated with the bands.

    I think this is by far the most common model of chamber brass group - something independent. Maybe there are more about that are attached to bands than there used to be [which is great, exposing bandspeople to other ways of thinking about music], but as far as I can see, their number is small relative to those chamber groups that don't associate with a band.
  3. I agree with you Dave. The Quintets tend to be seperate. It always helps with payments too.

    I play in a Quintet that does dinner nights and they are nice money spinners for the players.
  4. TheMusicCompany

    TheMusicCompany Supporting Member

    Turning the Question - Brass Banders in Quintets/Ensembles and why ...

    That's interesting to hear. Funnily enough though, a number of the bands I've played with have had smaller ensembles which were directly linked with the main band. The most recent had a 10 piece that played out at a number of gigs which lent themselves to a smaller group. It was formed mainly to accommodate these smaller jobs vs player demands, but it still performed under the banner of the band's name. It was also great fun to experience the different sounds and requirements of such a group!

    However, there also seems to be a trend that banders get talking to other banders and the ideas are bourne to try the quintet or 10 piece route. A number of friends have done just that and created between them a couple of quintets and a 10 piece.

    Maybe I should redirect my curiosity by turning the question around:

    How many brass banders also play in a quintet or ensemble and why?
  5. MoominDave

    MoominDave Well-Known Member

    i) Different approach to music - different music full stop.
    ii) More musical responsibility/reward
    iii) More musical flexibility - don't have to "please the audience" with tat in the same way that bands feel they have to
    iv) Less historical baggage - see (iii)
    v) Easier to organise
    vi) Can make money out of it - far and away the least important for me
  6. DublinBass

    DublinBass Supporting Member

    We have an octet called Brass Band of Columbus 2 (BBC2 for short). (although we have ranged from a quintet to 10-piece depending on the gig)

    Primary instrumentation is composed of 2 cornets, flugel, tenor horn, trombone, baritone, Eb bass, and drum kit.

    None of us are the "principal players" in our sections so it allows us an opportunity to have more musical responsibility (as listed above), be featured as a soloist, and play different music.

    With two couples in the group, it has also been relatively easy to arrange rehearsals when we need them (we often rehearse without the percussionist).

    It is also much more cost effective to send a smaller group to a low paying gig or smaller venues and thus far the audiences have just as happy.
  7. Deltabrass

    Deltabrass Member

    I play in a brass quintet that is made up of past and present members of a youth band. People in the group are aged 24-16 but we, as MoominDave said, are not in any way connected to the youth band.
    It all started as I was (and still am, by choice it has to be said) brass bandless but still wanted to play in a brass orientated group. We rehearse as and when we can and there is no really heavy commitment involved. We take on bookings that don't clash with any other bands we are part of have commitments, and all in all it is just a way where we can turn up, have fun and experiment with different music.
  8. WhatSharp?

    WhatSharp? Active Member

    Myself and a few others started a quintet / ensemble back in june. At the time some of us had changed bands and were only playing once a week and wanted another outlet to play. It's since become great fun and a chance to play outside the normal brass band reportiore and instrumentation.
  9. weemarky

    weemarky Member

    I play in a Brass Quintet as part of my job and do quite enjoy it. The music is different and certainly gives the performer more responsibility and pressure which can be the difference between a good player and a potentially great one. Especially when working with young players this can be a great tool.


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