Soloist Prizes

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
Just a question, as recent experiences have thrown up different answers in different situations. How does your band deal with the rewards for winning a soloist prize?

It's a funny one, because generally if the band as a whole wins a prize at a contest, the prize money goes into the band kitty - however Solo prizes are occasionally treated differently.

Now I'm not advocating one approach over another, (both have their pros and cons) however every band I've played at has had the soloist/section prizes going back into the band funds. But I do understand this is not always the case and that some bands allow soloists to keep any winnings.

How does your band approach this?

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
Me neither! Though I have a few "Best Basses" trophies to my credit, which I was at least 25% responsible for....

(Or put another way, 75% NOT responsible for...)
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A 'no brainer' for me Andi.
It's still a team effort, and the soloist would look pretty daft if none of the band came in to accompany them.
I can't imagine that anyone would consider keeping the prize money!


If it's a section one, then let them parade the trophy around the bar while the treasurer makes off with the cash!

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
That would be my thinking too, John. A band has to be a team, and things are a lot simpler if everyone plays for the good of the team.

OK, if the soloist wins an instrument for the band, I suppose it's only fair that they should have first shout at whether to use it or not - but to me it always remains the band's instrument.


Staff member
What if the soloist prize isn't cash but an instrument?
I noticed Cory were recently advertising for sale the instrument they received following of their Euro win.

Interesting point about a borrowed player, but it should still go to the band: presumably any potential expenses remuneration would have been sorted out in advance, so everyone should know where they stand.


Active Member
Just make the prizes something "the band" wouldn't want. When the Northumberland Picnic still had a band contest their were prizes for all instruments (eg. best euph, horn etc) and the prizes were non cash/instruments... they ranged from clocks to ashtrays! :D


Well-Known Member
Genuinely surprised by the responses so far. You're all obviously far more altruistic than I am - I'd expect to personally receive a soloist prize if I won it... Mind you, not many cash prizes on offer for soloists these days!

Actually quite a pleasing 'people are nice' moment...

Rambo Chick

I won one, but didn't get the choice whether I kept it or not!!

That said, if I did I would have put it behind the bar for the band because that way everybody wins :biggrin:

You could always do the 'split it half and half' if it's a cash prize.:rolleyes:


Active Member
I've known a few noses put out of joint here... I'm not convinced there is a 100% right answer, but well worth discussing among members and carving an answer in stone above your bandroom door.


I guess all bands would work in different ways.

So long as everyone is aware in advance, then it should not cause an issue. I have known bands do both, and even situations where the MD insisted that a winning soloist should be offered the prize money.

I do think it's a nice gesture to offer the soloist the money/prize, but in most cases i'm sure the majority of band members would turn it down and let the band keep it.

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
Any Bass section prizes were always spent behind the bar (only for the bass players) or we all left.
You'd be lucky to get a round in for a full section from a typical best basses prize these days.....

I used to do the opposite. If we won the best basses prize, I got the section the first round in. Prize cheque always went to the band though.


When an instrument is awarded as a prize it is normally written into the rules of the contest that although the award is presented to the soloist it is actually a prize for the band and remains property of the band. I know a couple of times when Marsden gave away a Cornet at their March Contest they stipulated this at the time of entry to avoid any confusion after the event.