L&SC Areas 2014

cockaigne

Member
With two weeks to go, I'm really looking forward to this year's area contest at Stevenage. As we've learned in the past, the weekend won't receive the same attention from 4barsrest as the other regions do (though thankfully British Bandsman and a couple of others seem to do a bit better at getting their people in to listen and comment).

All sections should have something interesting to offer, with some of last year's qualifiers having done well at the nationals (LGB, Kidlington and Epsom & Ewell), and a number of other bands having made good progress up from the lower sections in recent years.

There's been a fair bit of shuffling round in terms of MDs in (or near) the top section, too, with new conductors in front of three championship section bands, if I've counted rightly.

Throw a good selection of test-pieces into the mix, and it should make for a good weekend. Anyone else getting excited already? Any well-informed (or, better still, wildly random) predictions...? :confused:
 

cockaigne

Member
Sorry to hear that. I know not every piece will be to everyone's tastes, but I had thought the selection of a new[er] piece would find more favour than the last couple of pieces.
 

MRSH

Supporting Member
Not tempted to get your "Traje de luces" out on stage then?
Ha-Ha - I don't think so - although seeing me prance around in one of those would be more entertaining than listening to 21 performances of this piece!!!!
 

Alan Sykes

New Member
Wantage is going to have a busy day on the Sunday at Stevenage - with 3 bands playing on the same day : Wantage 'A' with Phil Bailey (champ section), 'B' with Danny Dullforce (first appearance in 2nd section), and Wantage Academy with Nikki Jones (first ever contest appearance, 4th section). And we do like the 4th section piece!

Alan Sykes
BBb bass
Wantage Academy Brass
 

Bass Trumpet

Active Member
Wantage is going to have a busy day on the Sunday at Stevenage - with 3 bands playing on the same day : Wantage 'A' with Phil Bailey (champ section), 'B' with Danny Dullforce (first appearance in 2nd section), and Wantage Academy with Nikki Jones (first ever contest appearance, 4th section). And we do like the 4th section piece!

Alan Sykes
BBb bass
Wantage Academy Brass

Great to see such a big entry from one band organisation.

Kidlington will be there to make our first appearance in the Championship section since 2010. I'm very pleased to have a full compliment of players, with a couple of new signings, but I'll be honest, St Magnus is proving to be a very steep learning curve! Still, it's only a sport.
 

Bass Trumpet

Active Member
...the aim is to get 12 bands in the Champ section...:)

Rather reminds me of when Desford had two bands in the Championship section. They had to share the same set of jackets, so the aim was to get an early draw to avoid playing in someone else's cold sweat. :-?
 

FlugelCave

New Member
The First section will be tasty too. 5 bands separated by one point at the top of the league table. The battle for promotion will be a good one !
 

cockaigne

Member
Two adjudicators all round will be a big change, too - hopefully for the better, after a few puzzled faces at results time in recent years!
 

cockaigne

Member
Agreed - it's been the case for the West and Yorkshire for a number of years, and other regions have been much quicker to follow suit.

Of course it doesn't guarantee everyone will be happy with their individual result - but it makes for a far less subjective process, which is fairer to all bands at a contest where every placing is important.
 

MoominDave

Well-Known Member
I can say from experience that having two adjudicators certainly doesn't prevent weird results from creeping in. There's no foolproof plan for something this subjective. However, if it's what bandspeople want, and bands are willing to pay for it, then it's got to be a good thing, right? I'd certainly imagine that it lessens the number of odd outcomes - though no-one's ever tried to prove that, to my knowledge.
 

cockaigne

Member
I certainly wouldn't want to claim it was perfectly failsafe - having recently been marked down by two respected adjudicators for having, er, followed the composer's instructions myself!

The two-heads-are-better-than-one theory can also come unstuck if there is disagreement between the two adjudicators, followed by the opinion of one winning out over the other, with a band ending up with a lower placing as a result.

However generally, it's a system which generally produces more balanced/well-moderated results, with most extreme anomalies ironed out somewhat. Given how much store bands place in the area contests as a means for ranking (and with it the prospects of demotion, promotion and/or national qualification) it should certainly be looked upon as money well spent - in fact I found it surprising that not all regions had adopted this system en bloc, given that each contest is held under the same rules.
 

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