Wansbeck Music Festival

Burradon Community and Balliol Primary Schools took part in the Wansbeck Music Festival on Friday 23rd March at Newbiggin Sports and Community Centre. (Unfortunately Backworth Park Primary School could not attend as it clashed with another school event.)

Nine children and one teaching assistant from Burradon travelled by mini-bus with our volunteer tutor Gavin, and met up with the Balliol contingent of eight children and one parent who travelled separately accompanied by two teachers.

Two other primary schools from Bedlington also took part as a combined forty strong band with cornets, tenor horns, baritone horns and trombones. They looked an impressive sight especially in the way they all brought their instruments up together when the teacher raised her arms ready to start!

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Burradon were up next. We played Ode to Joy and When the Saints Go Marching In. They were both arranged as two-part harmonies to show off our accomplished longer-serving members and give an easier part to the relative new starters, although one of newest starters had a go at part one and did a great job! The adjudicator, Christine Thompson said Ode to Joy was “very accurate in the tune notes and rhythm patterns. The dotted rhythm was very precise and all together. Trombone solo instrument well done!” and When the Saints had “a solid introduction. This started with great enthusiasm and carefully counted notes and rests. The fast section was lively and flowing…well done!”

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Then Balliol played Freres Jacques and our own arrangement “United” featuring The Blaydon Races. Freres Jacques had “a strong rhythmic pulse and the quavers were flowing..some good p (quiet) and f (loud) contrast”. United was “very rhythmic with some tongues working very fast. Some complicated rhythms here. The final verse was accurate. A great coda (where the band shouted ‘United’ to end the performance). Well done!”

Christine then invited all the brass players back up on stage and led us through some simple scale and dynamic exercises. As she said , it was fantastic to be part of such an inspirational mass of (mostly) young brass players!

For full adjudicator’s remarks see: BurradonBalliol

Hopefully some photos to follow…

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