On 14th June, the band headed off to Cornwall for the weekend to compete in the West of England Bandsmen's Festival in Bugle.
The contest took place on Saturday 15th and involved a march to the contest ground where the deportment prize was awarded to the band judged as presenting the highest standard of marching and the best overall appearance.
During the second part of the contest, the band performed two set test pieces - Corineus by Christopher Bond and March, Victors Acclaimed by Bramwell Coles.
We are delighted to report that the band were awarded first prize for our performances of both the test piece - Corineus and the March - Victors Acclaimed. Principal Cornetist, Bruce Davies was also awarded the Best Soloist prize.
Congratulations everyone and thank you to the really hard-working organising committee of the West of England Bandsmen's Festival for running such a wonderful event!
On Sunday 9th the band played at a Charity Concert at Stinchcombe Rugby Club. Organised by the Dursley Rotary Club,
this well-supported, annual event raises funds for a wide range of local charities.
The band performed a variety of music, closing the evening as always with the traditional favourites from the Last Night of the Proms - Jerusalem, Pomp & Circumstance and Fantasia on British Sea Songs.
Our thanks go to our guest conductor for the night, Mr Simon Jones.
This event is a first for the band, performing an afternoon concert on Sunday 19th at the Kingshill Arts and Meeting Centre in Dursley.
The weather probably put off some who might have come along for an afternoon in the great outdoors, but we were lucky enough to avoid the rain and the audience that did come along were extremely appreciative (as were the neighbours - thank you!)
We hope we will be able to play at this lovely venue again in the future, and will do our best to arrange better weather next time!
On Monday 13th, the band performed alongside our newly-formed Wotton Learner Band and the Cam Learner Band. This event is a great opportunity for the learners to play to an audience and get a feel for the experience of playing in a large group with other musicians.
A big thank you to Nigel Galliot who stepped in as our conductor for the evening!
Click on the link for more information about how to learn to play a brass insturment with our Learner Band.
The sun shone (for a while) on us for this year's trip to Wotton Hill where we welcomed in the Summer on the first Sunday in May.
The band first began this ritual in 1910 and in recent years it has attracted quite a large crowd which is very much appreciated.
Our thanks as always go to our good friend, Gordon Phillips from the Wotton Arts Festival, who was our Musical Director for the morning.
What an amazing night! The band's anniversary concert took place on 13th April at The Renisahaw Innovation Centre at New Mills, Kingswood, where we were joined by the world class Cory Band. The concert began with a short introduction from Wotton Silver Band, telling the story of our first 125 years with music and accompanying slide show. The audience were then treated to a wonderful concert from the Cory Band which included their Brass in Concert winning performance - retelling the story of Romeo and Juliet.
The concert was also an opportunity to say farewell and thank you to Eb Bass player, Derek Horsfall who is retiring and who will be greatly missed!
The band played in the West of England Championships in Torquay on Saturday 10th, playing Darrol Barry's 'The Rise of the Phoenix'. After a strong performance the band was awarded 4th place, which now leaves us at the top of the West of England 2nd Section.
Well done to everyone and thanks to Julie for organising the weekend for us again!
Unfortunately there are no further tickets available for our concert with The Cory Band.
We are delighted to release the details of our exciting concert which takes place on 13th April:
At the very location of the textiles mill that the band originated from in 1894, Wotton Silver Band will perform a joint concert with the World’s No. 1 Brass Band, The Cory Band from South Wales.
Now the global headquarters of engineering technologies company Renishaw, the concert venue is The Innovation Centre at New Mills, Kingswood, a conference facility with comfortable, tiered seating and state-of-the-art acoustic - a fitting venue for a spectacular, multimedia presentation in celebration of brass band music.
The audience is invited to witness the amazing, virtuosi talents of The Cory Band who are multiple National, European, British Open and Brass in Concert champions. Prepare to be astonished! They are as good as it gets! Musical Director, Philip Harper is a prolific composer and resides in Gloucester.
For 125 years Wotton Silver Band (formerly the Abbey Band – named after the historic abbey in Kingwood) has played a significant role in the life of Wotton-under-Edge and the surrounding district, performing concerts, leading community parades and testing themselves regularly in both regional and national competitions. In 2017, under the leadership of MD Ian Dickinson, they achieved the highest ever placing in their long history of 5th in the First Section of the West of England Championships.
One family will be represented in both bands. Cory percussionist Ali Woodman will be joined on stage by his father Stuart, sister-in-law Jo and teenage nephew George as both bands come together for the finale.
Wotton Silver Band has consistently developed young brass players and has a Training Band. Since 2016, they have worked in partnership with the Cotswold Edge Brass Festival towards the vision of flourishing brass tuition across the wider district. The ticket price for this concert is therefore subsidised for young people to make attendance affordable for families and to inspire the district’s learners.
Tickets: £15 adult, £5 under 18s, available here from Monday 28th January or at Robinson’s Florist, Long Street, Wotton-under-Edge 01453 887774.
On Sunday 24th the band took part in the ODBBA contest in Oxford, performing the 2019 area test piece 'The Rise of the Phoenix' by Darrol Barry. After a fine performance, the band was awarded first place. Special congratulations go to our horn section who won the best section of the day, and principal cornet player, Bruce Davies, who not only won the best cornet player of the day, he was also awarded best instrumentalist!
On Tuesday 19th the band gave its first public performance of this year's area test piece, 'The Rise of the Phoenix' by Darrol Barry.
The open rehearsal took place at the Innovation Centre at Renishaw, New Mills site, where in April the band will be performing a concert alongside the Cory Band in celebration of our 125th anniversary.
In a break from our contest preparations, the band played a programme of varied music for the Downend 41 Club's evening function on Saturday 9th. A huge thank you to our hosts who, as always, made us feel extremely welcome and appreciated.
The band spent the weekend of 19th & 20th January at a brass workshop with John Miller - the fantastically accomplished professional trumpet & music educator.
We spent a really entertaining and informative 2 days going back to basics on brass technique including posture, breathing, sound in a musical context, listening skills, sense of team, concentration and communication - and we even managed to squeeze in a curry night!
Meanwhile, our percussionists benefited from a great percussion tutorial day with Jon Helm from the Welsh Opera.
Thank you John & Jon for a wonderful, educational weekend & thanks to Bruce Davies for another superbly arranged event!
Our annual concert took place on Saturday 15th in a packed Kingswood Village Hall. We were joined by the amazing Training Band for a night of Christmassy music including, as is becoming band tradition, the training band's very own version of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer (thanks to Training Band MD Diane Ansel).
During the concert the band presented honary lifetime membership awards to Brian Chappell and Stan Rodman who both played a huge part in the progress of the band over many years.
On Wednesday 5th the band played at a charity concert in aid of Chipping Sodbury Lions, alongside the Yate Choral Society. The concert, as always, was a great start to the busy Christmas season for the band.
To mark the 100 year anniversary of the end of World War 1, the band takes this opportunity to remember its two players lost during the conflict ...
Private Charles Smith of the Gloucestershire Regiment - died 19th October 1915 aged 21. Son of Mr and Mrs James Smith.
Lance Corporal James Davis of the Royal Army Medical Corps - died 26th August 1916 aged 34. Son Mr and Mrs J Davis and husband of Ethel B Davis.
On Tuesday 6th the band took part in a fantastic evening of music, joined by musicians of all ages from different brass groups in the local area. The bands included Wotton Training Band, Cam Learners' Band and The British School (Wotton) Band.
All groups performed on their own and then joined the Wotton Silver Band in a mass band performance of two pieces from Modest Mussorgsky's from Pictures at an Exhibition - 'The Hut on Hen's Legs (Baba Yaga)' and 'The Great Gate of Kiev'.
This was a great opportunity for the band to get to know the fantastic music groups in the area and for everyone to experience making music as part of a large team!
On Saturday 20th the Band played along with the Panache Steel Band at the annual Poppy Proms in Dursley to mark the start of this year's Poppy Appeal.
As well as the usual 'last night of the proms' music, the band performed a varied programme which included Peter Graham's arrangement of Ronan Hardiman's 'Cry of the Celts'. This piece featured our fantastic percussion team - Sam, George & Nick, Alan & Pete on Euphonium, Ian on Eb Horn, Ken on Flugel Horn, Marcus on Soprano & Jules on Principal Cornet (in fact, most of the band really!) Well done all!
September began with a concert for Under the Edge Arts in the Chipping Hall, Wotton on Saturday 1st. It was great for the band to perform in a different local hall to a new and appreciative audience.
Our concert included solos from Dave McWhirter on Trombone, Bruce Davies on Cornet and Ian Brown on Tenor Horm and also featured the cornet team playing the quartet 'Mr Sandman'.
On Sunday 19th the band made a welcome return to the lovely John Coles Park in Chippenham. It is several years since the band played at the park but despite this, we were made very welcome by a great audience.
We were delighted to be invited to take part in The Royal Oak's Fun Day on Saturday 11th.
A quintet from the band performed at the event which was part of the Community Public Access Defibrillators Appeal organised by Wotton Lions.
We have since heard that the event raised enough funds to purchase a new defibrillator for the town, so congratulations to all at the Royal Oak!
On the weekend of 14th/15th some members of Wotton Silver Band had the privilege of playing alongside Durham Miners Association Brass Band at the annual Durham Miners Gala. The whole event was spectacular, culminating at Durham Cathedral where we finished a hot day of marching with a service to bless the banners. Massive thanks to DMA for looking after us so well and for having us alongside and sharing their event with us .
On Saturday 16th we played for the locally-run festival 'Party in the Parc' in Wotton.
Sadly for the organisers, the weather was not kind while we were playing during the early afternoon, but hopefully the sunshine later in the afternoon pulled in a larger crowd for the evening performances.
Despite the weather, the band played on with a popular programme of music, featuring the cornet quartet - 'Mr Sandman' and the ever-popular 'Post Horn Gallop' from Bruce Davies.
On the evening of Sunday 10th the band performed in the Stinchcombe Rugby Club marquee at the Proms event organised by Dursley Rotary Club. This is a popular, annual event that raises funds for a range of local good causes.
The band were joined this year by singers Anne Martin and Elizabeth Flemming, and as always, the event was expertly compered by Mr Terry Pascoe.
On Saturday 19th the band performed in concert at St Bartholomew's Church in Cam.
This was a lovely venue for the band and one which we hope to return to (although we will try to find a less popular date next time).
Thank you to all the audience members who turned out to watch us despite the lure of royal weddings and football matches!
Sunday 6th saw the band keeping up its tradition of playing on Wotton Hill to welcome in the Spring! We were joined this year by a really great crowd, and enjoyed the warmest weather for this event in living memory! (although we are not quite able to confirm it as the warmest ever, given that the band first performed on the hill in May 1910).
Thank you to everyone who came to support us - it makes this a really special (if not slightly crazy) event in our banding calendar!
On Saturday 28th the band performed its annual concert as part of the Wotton Arts Festival at St Mary's Church in Wotton-under-Edge.
This year we privileged to be joined by guest soloist, the fantastic Tom Hutchinson, principal cornet player of world number one brass band, Cory.
Tom displayed his awe-inspiring playing, treating the audience to a real variety of music including 'The Paragon', 'Tico-Tico' and 'Carnival of Venice'.
Tom is without doubt one of the finest cornet players of his generation, and it was a wonderful experience for all of us at Wotton to work with him. Not only an amazing cornet player, but a friendly and engaging visitor for us too.
Legacy - price £10.00 is now available to buy from ...
The Heritage Centre in Wotton
Coventry / Bennett Jones in Wotton High Street
or you can contact us here to order one.
'Legacy' reflects the band's journey through its 122-year history and is dedicated to all members past and present who, together with our many supporters, have worked hard to maintain a brass band to serve Wotton and its surrounding area.
Click here for more details about Legacy.