Monday, 24 April 2017 21:11

The Guild

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After months of rehearsals the band made a successful return to the Manx Music Festival, The Guild.


Sunday 23rd April saw the band return to competitive banding after a 31 year gap, when we took part in the 125th Manx Competitive Music, Speech and Dance Festival, better known as The Guild.


There are 3 main classes for full brass band, with Castletown entering 2 of them, the Standard March and Hymn, and the 20 Minute Own Choice Programme. The 2 classes are run in conjunction with each other, each band playing the march and hymn and then waiting for the go ahead from the adjudicator before carrying on with our 20 minute programme.


We were drawn band number 1, and for our standard march, MD Ken Mitchell had chosen the Welsh march Castell Coch by TJ Powell and the hymn tune Lloyd. Following this the band left the stage, to the puzzlement of the organisers, and then the men did a quick change into dinner jackets or tuxedo's before ambling back onto the stage looking like we were all going to a night at the opera, which was the theme for our programme.


Once given the go ahead we started with the Grand March from Verdi's opera Aida, an arrangement done by one of our former musical directors, Major JE Thirtle. We followed this up with our first solo of the evening, Barbara Cole playing the lovely aria, On With The Motley from the opera Pagliacci by Ruggiero Leoncavallo arranged by Ray Farr. This was quickly followed by our Intermezzo which came from Cavalleria Rusticana.


The second solo was from Rossini's Barber of Seville. Ian Astill, our very own factotum played Largo al Factotum, complete with rowdy shouting from within the band.


Our finale was the Toreadors Song, the arrangement coming from Alan Fernie's Carmen Suite. Now we had the opportunity to relax and listen to the other bands.


The camaraderie between the bands was wonderful, all sharing the same room in which to prepare, and the great comments and welcome we received from the other bands welcoming us back into competition was very much appreciated. Our thanks must also go to those members of Douglas Town Band who joined us for the occasion.


And to cap it all we won a new cup for this years festival, the Gordon Kennaugh Astill Cup for the Most Entertaining Programme. Gordon was a long time musical director of Onchan Silver Band and related to 2 of our players, Bobby who was Gordon's brother, and Ian his great nephew.


The full list of results was as follows;

Hymn results
1. Manx Youth Band 92
2. Ramsey Town Band 91
3. Manx Concert Brass 90
= 4. Rushen Silver Band 87
= 4. Castletown Met Silver 87

March results
1. Manx Concert Brass 91
2. Ramsey Town Band 90
= 3. Manx Youth Band 88
= 3. Castletown Met Silver 88
5. Rushen Silver Band 87

Entertainment programme results
1. Manx Concert Brass 91
2. Ramsey Town Band 90
3. Castletown Met Silver 88
= 4. Rushen Silver Band 87
= 4. Manx Youth Band 87

Best Soloist:
Sammy Clague - Manx Youth Band

Most Entertaining Programme:
Castletown Met Silver Band



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