2011 Finals Test Pieces announced

Bass Trumpet

Active Member
As a matter of interest. Who is "The Panel"? Isn't it about time bands decided for themselves what to play at major contests via a vote or at least a short list to choose from. It would help get rid of this Overture fascination, The same old names getting commissions, squeaky music, using pieces previously commissioned and played by the same old two or three bands, Stupidly hard pieces for the lower sections. Just a thought.......

I do agree with you Toby, but in saying that you've condemned virtually every piece chosen for all contests in the last 10 years :eek:

Trouble is with taking a vote, bands will just choose their favourite piece/composer. There will be no room for new talent to come through. If it were up to some, the top section would be playing Pagannini every year, with the occasional Journey into Freedom.
 
Agreed Toby. I feel sorry for Simon, Lucy, Gavin, Pete et al. but bums on seats and a tune to whistle on the way to the bus stop are all the 'panel' care about. Where's our next 'spectrum' or 'contest music' coming from?

No need to feel sorry - there is no right to be commissioned by anyone, and whilst it would be great to have a piece used at a contest such as the Nationals, to a composer it isn't (at least shouldn't be!) the be all and end all. There's a big wide musical world out there, and part of the fun of being a composer is that, should you want to, and should you work hard enough, you get to see and be part of it.

Picking pieces must be a balancing act - without the paying public the contest couldn't happen, and if the promoters feel that the best, or only, way to get bums on seats is to pick more conservative music, then you can understand their decision. The flip side to that coin is that should you pick some new, exciting, different music, the chances are you are going to appeal to a different audience, and probably one that is - in general - younger, therefore safeguarding the long term future. But it is a risk.

I also think people should reserve judgement on any new piece until they have had chance to hear and digest the work - am pretty sure none of the bands would like to be judged before they have played a note! ;-)
 

toby hobson

Member
Trouble is with taking a vote, bands will just choose their favourite piece/composer. There will be no room for new talent to come through. If it were up to some, the top section would be playing Pagannini every year, with the occasional Journey into Freedom.



Well it being a popular choice is a good start Duncan, but having said that if it is a new commission or giving a obvious talent a chance to show what they could do or opportunity to develop I'm not suggesting a list of say five names couldn't be given for a new work and the bands could decide who they would like to commission for the event. Who better to to choose the commission than the people who play the stuff week in week out. That way the "panel" could be in charge of the big picture but the players would have a sense of ownership in the piece selection. Ive fairly recently played concert works by such relatively new talents as Lucy, Pete, Andy Scott all of which should be getting a chance by now and I'm sure many other people wouldn't think twice about voting for one of the above. I think its a little unfair to suggest we would merely end up with J i F and Pagganini, there is a broad spectrum of musical tastes in banding. Besides, many of the younger players wouldn't necessarily vote for the classics as they much like me (and I'm an old bid!!) have never got the chance to play them in anger at a high level.
 

WoodenFlugel

Moderator
Staff member
Force Of Destiny was used in 1988 for a 2nd section contest the adjudicator said that all bands had played the piece to a good level.
Im not knocking the piece at all its one of my top 10 favorites but im sure a better piece could have been picked to test 1st section bands if you look at last years 1st section piece;)

Are you sure you are remembering that correctly, Ian? This was bugging me so I looked into it....

http://brassbandresults.co.uk/pieces/the-force-of-destiny/

According to that, its been a Championship section piece pretty much from day one up to the announcement a few days ago, with the exception of Pontin's finals in 1980 where it was used in the 2nd (or 1st today) section. Its definitely not a current 2nd section piece. Based on that history it is probably about right for 1st section Nationals.

Doesn't make it any less of a lazy choice though....
 

Bass Trumpet

Active Member
No. He told me that he is glad he has nothing to do with it!

Just for accuracy's sake, I've re-read my email from David and he said that he was pleased it was not his job, as whatever was chosen would be wrong in somebody's book.

I can't say I blame him, as there will always be somebody that disagrees. However, I still stick with my original statement in saying that the 1st section have really suffered of late, with a glut of potboilers from 40+ years ago. Pentacle was not popular, but at least it was a step in the right direction.
 

foxy bingo

New Member
That's ok Oliver, I'm sure they've not heard of you ;)
Oliver lol...........what have you been smoking...or shouldn't I ask!... Lol

Seriously. Who is Alan Hope? Was he a top player or conductor? He adjudicates doesn't he? What's his playing history and who did C play for anyone good? and more importantly what does C stand for!
 

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
And another point. Just because you've played for someone good, how does that automatically qualify you to do anything else? In banding or any walk of life? And vice versa, just because you haven't, why should it disqualify you?

(The Ossie Ardilles/Kevin Keegan vs Arsene Wenger/Jose Mourinho comparison is possibly an apt one here.)

As for Alan Hope, The only time I've crossed paths with him was when he adjudicated us at Malton contest. He put us last - which we probably deserved - but still gave us best basses (For which I was exceptionally pleased) which at least showed he was certainly listening to all aspects of the performance!
 
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Anno Draconis

Well-Known Member
Are you sure you are remembering that correctly, Ian? This was bugging me so I looked into it....

http://brassbandresults.co.uk/pieces/the-force-of-destiny/

According to that, its been a Championship section piece pretty much from day one up to the announcement a few days ago, with the exception of Pontin's finals in 1980 where it was used in the 2nd (or 1st today) section. Its definitely not a current 2nd section piece. Based on that history it is probably about right for 1st section Nationals.

Doesn't make it any less of a lazy choice though....

It was the Pontins Finals test-piece for the second section in about 1989 (when there were still Easter qualifying contests). I remember because I played it with Northop and won on it - understandably it therefore sticks in my mind.

It was a proper pig at that level, and as someone rightly pointed out earlier, there was no first section, so the second section in those days (in its upper levels) was largely comprised of either recently relegated top section bands or those hoping imminently to go up. Giving it to current second section bands would result in a multitude of car crashes, I'm afraid.

I can't imagine anyone thinks it isn't hard enough, it's just a poor choice in terms of musical innovation, imho.
 

Brassbones

Member
No need to feel sorry - there is no right to be commissioned by anyone, and whilst it would be great to have a piece used at a contest such as the Nationals, to a composer it isn't (at least shouldn't be!) the be all and end all. There's a big wide musical world out there, and part of the fun of being a composer is that, should you want to, and should you work hard enough, you get to see and be part of it.

Picking pieces must be a balancing act - without the paying public the contest couldn't happen, and if the promoters feel that the best, or only, way to get bums on seats is to pick more conservative music, then you can understand their decision. The flip side to that coin is that should you pick some new, exciting, different music, the chances are you are going to appeal to a different audience, and probably one that is - in general - younger, therefore safeguarding the long term future. But it is a risk.

I also think people should reserve judgement on any new piece until they have had chance to hear and digest the work - am pretty sure none of the bands would like to be judged before they have played a note! ;-)


Pete, you should be in politics not music! I can only aspire to your levels of restraint and even handedness ;)
 

Anno Draconis

Well-Known Member
and more importantly what does C stand for!

"Colonel"

KFC_logo.svg


(C) DMBabe 2010 :biggrin:
 

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