Butlins Contest 2017

Euphonium Lite

Active Member
All sections potentially face the same situation, although Championship is generally done – I believe – by invitation rather than the first-come-first-served application process for the lower sections


Coupled with the fact that only Flowers and GUS seem to win it nowadays, it must be an increasingly futile contest for bands to enter, especially when you consider most people are done – and can “enjoy” the weekend - from Saturday evening onwards, whilst top section players have to do it all again on the Sunday.


I do wonder whether it would be better to get rid of the top section testpiece element altogether and make it into an entertainments contest only.
 

Accidental

Supporting Member
Does the same situation apply for sections 1 and 2 who do seem to get a good turnout at Butlins?
Well no, I don't think so.
Butlins always seems to be very different for friends playing in sections 1-4 both in terms of prep and the weekend itself because they don't have the 2nd (Ents) contest to rehearse over Christmas on top of a test piece, and they don't have to play again on the Sunday (which in theory means staying relatively sober on the Saturday night and going to bed when everyone else is partying, lol)
 

4th Cornet

Well-Known Member
Well no, I don't think so.
Butlins always seems to be very different for friends playing in sections 1-4 both in terms of prep and the weekend itself because they don't have the 2nd (Ents) contest to rehearse over Christmas on top of a test piece, and they don't have to play again on the Sunday (which in theory means staying relatively sober on the Saturday night and going to bed when everyone else is partying, lol)
I appreciate those points, but they would seem to apply regardless of whether the test piece is set or otherwise.
 

Chris Hicks

Member
Well no, I don't think so.
Butlins always seems to be very different for friends playing in sections 1-4 both in terms of prep and the weekend itself because they don't have the 2nd (Ents) contest to rehearse over Christmas on top of a test piece, and they don't have to play again on the Sunday (which in theory means staying relatively sober on the Saturday night and going to bed when everyone else is partying, lol)

That's the theory, the reality not so much :D;)
 

Accidental

Supporting Member
I appreciate those points, but they would seem to apply regardless of whether the test piece is set or otherwise.
The choice of test piece can make a massive difference to preparation and rehearsal time before the contest because Own Choice allows bands to pick something that plays to their strengths and/or that they already know which will potentially take a lot less time to get up to performance standard..... for the top section who have to get ready for the Ents contest too, that could be a pretty big factor in deciding whether or not to enter.
 

4th Cornet

Well-Known Member
The choice of test piece can make a massive difference to preparation and rehearsal time before the contest because Own Choice allows bands to pick something that plays to their strengths and/or that they already know which will potentially take a lot less time to get up to performance standard..... for the top section who have to get ready for the Ents contest too, that could be a pretty big factor in deciding whether or not to enter.

Makes sense.
I guess the key consideration depends on the specific test piece chosen when set; if it suits the band then they will still go and enjoy the challenge, if it doesn't suit , there's a good chance they'll decide to miss that year.
 

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