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brass journo
17.05.2006, 11:49
Despite the number one draw at the recent Grand Shield contest, the Gloucester based PolySteel Band gave a performance that the band was immensely proud of and gained it a sixth placing..
Despite the disappointment at once again narrowly missing out on qualification to the British Open, Musical Director Philip Harper was ecstatic with the band’s commitment and performance and was quick to congratulate and thank both his own band the two bands that did qualify for the 2006 British Open.
Commenting he said: “Firstly, may I congratulate everyone in the PolySteel band on a simply magnificent performance of Whitsun Wakes at Blackpool. It was the sort of performance that you can only dream about really; all the hotspots nailed, immaculate soloists, tight ensemble and an immense dynamic range. A fantastic effort from all concerned and definitely one of my conducting career highlights - not a term I would use lightly!
“However, we have now spent five years in the Grand Shield and are still waiting for our breakthrough. In that time we have had two third places (but not in the year when three bands qualified!), one performance on Tallis Variations which was widely hailed throughout the venue all day as the expected winner (when the band was placed 7th) and then this year, when we played out of our skins but from the number one draw, from which everyone knows you generally can't win anything! Someone doesn't seem to like us in Blackpool!
“Having said that, we are not a band to feel sorry for ourselves and have already moved on from the result in Blackpool. PolySteel is now looking forward to making a mark at Cambridge in two weeks and then at the English National Championships in July. If we can pull off a performance like we did on Whitsun Wakes then we are capable of finishing high-up at both of these contests.”
Philip concluded by saying: “Congratulations to the two qualifying bands, especially Aveley and Newham which, as an old band of mine, I was particularly pleased to see going through to the 2006 British Open.”