The mud-slinging continues...! [ABBA discussion]

Hove Edge

Member
The overriding discontent seems not to be the scoring system but the lack of clarity that exists surrounding a decision.

The responsibility for fixing this lies with organisers and regional associations to get an adjudication format that works for them (how many adjudicators/open closed), and ABBA to insist upon points of clarity for bands. Reading a crit and having no idea of why a band has won or lost is in my opinion unacceptable. Bands want honest clarity, not a soft let down.

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Am I missing something? We enter Musical contests so shouldnt the winner be the most musical playing and reading......end of
 

GordonH

Active Member
Contesting is an irrelevance for most bands as most bands will not win.

Its arguable that contesting improves bands, but doing lots of concerts has the same effect. The bands that tend to do best in contests also happen to be the ones who do a lot of performing. The two are undoubtedly related.
 

DublinBass

Supporting Member
The overriding discontent seems not to be the scoring system but the lack of clarity that exists surrounding a decision.

The responsibility for fixing this lies with organisers and regional associations to get an adjudication format that works for them (how many adjudicators/open closed), and ABBA to insist upon points of clarity for bands. Reading a crit and having no idea of why a band has won or lost is in my opinion unacceptable. Bands want honest clarity, not a soft let down.

The wind band movement use a spoken adjudication where the band is given a recording of their performance and a commentary that ties up with a criteria based scoring system. This has been piloted in Scotland at a solo contest and it appeared to be a success. The one draw back here is the cost of the technical equipment but I'd guess the cost could be absorbed centrally by associations.

One thing I did pick up from Paul Andrews was that he was happy with the 3rd, 3rd and 11th given to the band at the Scottish Open because there was some transparency behind the mechanics of the decision.

My ideal scenario would be three adjudicators, one open and two closed. The open one would be responsible for ensuring that all parts were covered by the appropriate players.

If two adjudicators were to be employed Id have one open and one closed with the casting vote with the closed one in the event of a draw.

In all circumstances adjudicators should never sit together.

A problem exists, we just need to work together to fix it.

Quality post Kinrao :clap:
Any actual suggestion that has some merits!!

Of course (sadly) it will soon be shot down and you will be discredited because you are not in the "good old boys" or have enough of a pedegree.
 

DublinBass

Supporting Member
Am I missing something? We enter Musical contests so shouldnt the winner be the most musical playing and reading......end of

End of? I don't see it as so simple...I must be thick.

Please, enlighten me then. Give me an operational definition of "most musical playing."

(And perhaps give weightings to each of your categories so that I know which areas bands should focus most of their attention to get a desired result)

If "most musical playing" is that simple, then shouldn't 3 adjudicators typically get consistent results?
 

timbloke

Member
Round and round we go again. Lots of opinions but not much sign of action - which raises two questions in my head:

1. What is the organisational structure of the "Brass Banding Movement" in this country? Could someone draw me an organogram, or prepare a list of organisation bodies, how they interact with each other and what their role or responsibility is?

2. We (as a movement) need a detailed investigation/report/study into the state of brass banding at the moment, looking into contesting, adjudication etc. also looking into recruitment, marketing etc. This should be prepared by an independent consultant, for the governing body of the brass band movement - so it would help someone can identify this in question 1 (and as a hint, I'm not convinced one exists)! Big question is, who is going to pay for it?

So what happened to the Brass Band Summit last year? We've not seen much follow up to this, and from what I recall, the purpose was to create just such an organisation.

Let's start from the beginning - who's up for forming said organisation? Lets call it Brass Band UK.
 

WoodenFlugel

Moderator
Staff member
Round and round we go again. Lots of opinions but not much sign of action - which raises two questions in my head:

1. What is the organisational structure of the "Brass Banding Movement" in this country? Could someone draw me an organogram, or prepare a list of organisation bodies, how they interact with each other and what their role or responsibility is?

I don't think you can draw any kind of organogram as you'd just have boxes for each of the organisational bodies and no connecting lines! As far as I'm concerned there is very little interaction between any of them (aside from the registry and the BFBB, who are effectively the same organisation anyway).

As a starter for 10 list: BFBB, British Brass Band Registry, Scottish Brass Band Registry, Welsh Brass Band Registry, Kapitol, the various regional associations, ABBA, Philip Biggs (Masters), British Open Championships, Association of Band Traders, National Association of Brass Band Conductors, NYBBGB, NYBBW, NYBBS plus any others I've forgotten....

2. We (as a movement) need a detailed investigation/report/study into the state of brass banding at the moment, looking into contesting, adjudication etc. also looking into recruitment, marketing etc. This should be prepared by an independent consultant, for the governing body of the brass band movement - so it would help someone can identify this in question 1 (and as a hint, I'm not convinced one exists)! Big question is, who is going to pay for it?

There isn't and herein lies the problem. The BFBB is weak and fairly ineffective, but its as near as we have got to a National Body. I'd propose scrapping the BFBB altogether and bringing all of the above organisations and the bands together under one umbrella body. If we had this things like an independent assessment (plus many other things to the benefit of all) could be paid for from the members' subscriptions.

So what happened to the Brass Band Summit last year? We've not seen much follow up to this, and from what I recall, the purpose was to create just such an organisation.

I was thinking the same thing - I suspect it was another toothless talking shop for the old boys' network.

Let's start from the beginning - who's up for forming said organisation? Lets call it Brass Band UK.

Me for one (like Brass Band UK BTW!). I suspect a few others here would be close behind (including Anno Draconis ;))

Power to the people!
 

IanHeard

Member
Round and round we go again. Lots of opinions but not much sign of action - which raises two questions in my head:

1. What is the organisational structure of the "Brass Banding Movement" in this country? Could someone draw me an organogram, or prepare a list of organisation bodies, how they interact with each other and what their role or responsibility is?

2. We (as a movement) need a detailed investigation/report/study into the state of brass banding at the moment, looking into contesting, adjudication etc. also looking into recruitment, marketing etc. This should be prepared by an independent consultant, for the governing body of the brass band movement - so it would help someone can identify this in question 1 (and as a hint, I'm not convinced one exists)! Big question is, who is going to pay for it?

So what happened to the Brass Band Summit last year? We've not seen much follow up to this, and from what I recall, the purpose was to create just such an organisation.

Let's start from the beginning - who's up for forming said organisation? Lets call it Brass Band UK.

The problem for me is that we English are trapped in the "British" mess, that is National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain.
Every other banding nation apart from England owns and runs it`s own multi-sectional National contest, we imo are unable in England to progress and have true focus on the things that need to be done because instead of one single English body running the show we have 6 individual fiefdoms (the English regions) worrying only about putting on their respective Area contest every year for the benefit of a private company.
Full devolution in banding is the only way to end the pathetic level of banding administration we have to suffer in England.
 

Thirteen Ball

Active Member
Why would the Scots for instance entertain the idea of a "Brass Band UK" possibly sticking it`s nose in their affairs?

The whole point being that without a central and controlling organisation, and a consistent set of rules and regulations, a movement cannot move forward, and is consistently reduced to small groups, who occasionally tend towards fighting over scraps of power and influence.

The problem when you get a central comittee, funded by member subscriptions is that it has to be seen to be transparent - or it can end up as irretrievably corrupt as, say... FIFA...

My own opinion is that we need a central organisation so that we can poll our membership in order to work out what the general feeling is, because - and let's face it - half the problem in banding is that we simply don't know what the problem is!!

We focus on our own bandrooms and let others focus on theirs. And every so often we all get together for a good old drink and a moan and someone takes a trophy home. But that's it. There's not even a mechanism in place for contacting the contesting membership at large - so how do we expect to be capable of changing things without that?
 
This won't happen anytime soon as our "movement" is a rather isolationist one made up of many tiny empires - a bit like a medieval kingdom. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but does frustrate when a united voice (for change) would be more use.
At all levels of banding, but perhaps even more so at the very top we don't like to pool our resources as much as we like to hoard them - unless it's photocopies of Philip Sparkes music which seem to freely do the rounds. Historically organisations like sponsors (B&H), journo's (bandsman/4br), and leading musicians/conductors have been the closest thing we have had to governance, but all clearly with interests to protect.
 

Pauli Walnuts

Moderator
Staff member
The Orchestral movement contest? Thats a new one on me.
I didn't say anything about contesting - the post I referred to suggested a movement can't exist without the rules and regulations which clearly it can. But appreciating that the OP was about adjudication, then a contesting movement may well need them. But there are plenty of community based bands who do not contest and they are as much a part of our "movement" as those who do.

With pedant hat on though, there are plenty of orchestras, mainly youth I guess, who compete in music festivals in the UK. And I don't recall there being a national body for pianist to givern the various competitions they have. Of course, registration isn't an issue for them either!.
 

IanHeard

Member
The whole point being that without a central and controlling organisation, and a consistent set of rules and regulations, a movement cannot move forward, and is consistently reduced to small groups, who occasionally tend towards fighting over scraps of power and influence.

My own opinion is that we need a central organisation so that we can poll our membership in order to work out what the general feeling is, because - and let's face it - half the problem in banding is that we simply don't know what the problem is!!

I repeat my question, why would a regional/national commitee like Scotland (as an example) want a "central controlling organisation" interfering with their business?
The Scots "dine-out" on their independence of thought as regards banding matters and the last time I looked, banding in Scotland is in rude health and more crucially they seem to have a plan.
This is an English problem, why the need to involve the switched on Scots in our pointless English navel gazing?
 

timbloke

Member
Why would the Scots for instance entertain the idea of a "Brass Band UK" possibly sticking it`s nose in their affairs?

Ok. We can have a "Contesting Brass Band England" to satisfy those in Scotland / Wales etc. and those in non-contesting bands. But my point, and also that of a number of others, that at the moment there are numerous organisations, who all have their own agendas.

There is no reason why "BBUK" couldn't work with the regional sub-committees/organisations. No reason why a central body would have to "interfere", merely provide a uniform approach, the opportunity to communicate, and seek representation from the whole nation.
 

DMBabe

Supporting Member
Surely a central body should support not remove the good work already being done? Or maybe its just that all the areas have something to offer and just mixing all the good stuff will work? Ambitious to get some to give up or change their current set ups but some uniformity is surely required. It strikes me as odd that the depping rules for example differ so widely from area to area. Surely everyone can learn from what is working in areas if they know the differences..... until I started coming on here and more recently banding outside of Scotland I naively thought that all areas ran on the same rules and I've been banding for 27 years?

I think there's no harm in having a central ruling body to allow consistency between areas whilst the areas manage their own day to day stuff.
 
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