Brass Band Entertainment Wettbewerb: BlechKLANG wins with 6 points margin

Laatste update om 14:47 op Sunday, 2 June

Place Name Points
1. Brass Band BlechKLANG 91,75 points
2. Nordbayerische Brass Band 85,5 points
3. Jugend-Brass-Band PotzBlech 80,5 points
4. Brassband De Wâldsang  78,75 points
5. 3BA Youth Band  77,5 points
6. Jugendbrassband Oberösterreich 75,25 points
7. Brass Band Constantijn Huygens 74,5 points
8. Top Floor Brass Band  65,25 points

This entertainment contest maybe was a minor contest in the 4-day festival in Osnabrück this year, but 8 brass bands played up to their possibilities. Entertainment only in the music, good humor and silly things, they were all present today. Surprising youth bands and sheer quality playing and clever combinations of music and entertainment. There was a good crowd all day and the next contest has been only one hall away. Tomorrow is the last day of the German Music Festival and all results of all contests will be announced at the end.

Nordbayerische Brass Band 
In the spring of 2011 Brass Band Franken was founded. Although the brass band genre was still relatively rare in Germany, an extraordinary ensemble formed within only one and a half years. In October 2012, the band was officially declared a selection orchestra of the Nordbayerischer Musikbundes and received the new name "Nordbayerische Brass Band". On May 12, 2013, this formation won the second prize in the upper school category at the 1st German Open in Chemnitz. 
The North Bavarian Brass Band was founded to support and enrich the national brass band scene. The band is meant to play original brass band literature at the highest level. 

The start is without the cornetsection. Trombones up front and then the cornets enter the stage. An opening worthy of The Complete Champions and that’s the title MD and composer Mathias Wehr chose for his piece. Impressive start and a nice piece to put on your repertoire. The second piece is wellknown, Thomas Doss’ piece Blackout. The opening lacks a bit tempo, it’s a bit heavy and sticky in places. Lots of detail to admire though, a bit shrill at times in the cornetsection and minor issues with tuning. 

A real “pièce de résistance” now, Herman Belstadt’s Capriccio Brillante, played excellently by Tamara Kleinhenz. Bravo! Sing Sing Sing gives more swing to the performance. MD Mathias Wehr takes the opportunity to bring out his clarinet for a solo, he is booed of the stage, back to his baton. The ensemble needs him, it’s still a bit heavy and untidy. The crowd loves it. And that’s it for today.

Nordbayerische Brass Band - Mathias Wehr

Brass Band BlechKLANG
Within the music organisation Carl Zeiss Jena e.V. there is music-education, training and future-oriented work. It is a powerful youth and music club, indispensable for the children of Jena.
As a supporting association, Show Brass Band VielKLANG, the brass band BlechKLANG and the school orchestra KLANGwelt have their place under its roof. The brass band BlechKLANG is arguably the oldest brass band in Germany and has a versatile concert and event offer. Extensive music education programs and projects have also made the association part of the Jena educational landscape.

An angry looking Cossack observes the audience. He’s sitting on some kind of throne, while the band is preparing for their performance. The Cossack has started the performance with the Procession of the Tartars from Call of the Cossacks. The MD stops him and after greeting the spectators in the hall starts the piece again. Fez’s all around, different groups of musicians join on stage. MD Alexander Richter controls the events firmly until the last man enters the stage and the cossack takes over once again. Gypsy Dream is played before a curtain with dancing lights. The playing is neat by the little ensemble in front of the curtain. Very enjoyable. The Cossack Fire Dance is well played. All soloists made fine contributions.

Some tuning issues in Doyle’s Lament but nothing distracting from the music. Cossack Wedding Dance brings back the fun. The band played very well and executed all the fun with great care. Entertaining from the first note. Compliments.

Brass Band BlechKLANG - Alexander Richter

Top Floor Brass Band  
The Top Floor Brass Band was formed in July 2011. Compiled as "Grimley Colliery Brass Band" under the direction of Willi Budde at the theatre in Bielefeld in the season 2010/11 for the play BRASSED OFF. The band then decided to just keep going. Since 2013 under the direction of Ulrich Winsel. 
The name of the band refers to the fact that during the production of the show the members had to change clothes in a room on the top floor of the theatre. In 2014, the band played at the German Brass Band Championships and took 9th place in their section. 
With MD Anton Koch at the helm, the band plays a programme with a theme, Aspects of Freedom. A theme that fits almost every programme as the principal of the Top Floor Brass Band explains. Liberty Fanfare by John Williams got them off to a great start. The ensemble had some issues in the middle-section of the piece. The Carpenters hit We’ve only just begun is a nice arrangement with a feature for quartet of players. Nerves are taking their toll at the end.  
The Lark in the Clear Air in a complex new arrangement with referencies to the Vaughan Williams piece The Lark Ascending is a bit demanding for the soloist. Children of Sanchez brings another soloist out of the band. This is confident playing by the flugelplayer. The detail in the band isn’t always that clear. Bravo soloist! 
In contrast the band ends with a Willi Budde arrangement of Libera Me by Anton Bruckner. This needs a different expression and the band eventually gets almost there. Fatigue costs the band here in accuracy, tuning and balance. Overall interesting choices from this German band. 

Top Floor Brass Band - Anton Koch

Jugend Brass Band PotzBlech 
Potzblech shows all the fun
The brass band PotzBlech from Schwerin is the only established youth brass band in Northern Germany. The 35 musicians, ages 12-19, have been inspiring for years with their repertoire of classical arrangements, film scores and titles from jazz and rock pop. 
After a short break we’re back with the fifth band of the contest. They start in full darkness with Prismatic Light by Alan Fernie. The band is divided in three groups around the hall and the ensemble is together at first, but is later tested. The close is together again. There is a theme to this programme and it has all to do with the Sun, the Moon and Light. A spoken intro leads to The Dark Side of the Moon by Paul Lovatt Cooper. The playing is not without problems. Tuning and ensemble give issues, but if you take into consideration the age of the members of this band, this is pretty decent playing.  
For entertainment purpose Instant Concert is an engaging work and the band takes full advantage with all kind of rowdyness. And it’s the extended version today. Now it’s time for sunglasses and Thrift Shop as we remembered it from the European Youth Brass Band a few years ago. The finale is an unknown piece with lots of Balkan sounds. In the performance of Potzblech all the fun to play in a youth brass band was shown.  

Jugend Brass Band PotzBlech - Hans Jacob

Brassband De Wâldsang Buitenpost 
Our Hidden Language shows all skills of De Wâldsang
The band was founded in the early 1970s as a brass ensemble from the local music-school in Buitenpost in the province of Friesland. In the years followed, the band became more and more successful and won various brass festivals in the Netherlands and beyond. The band is Dutch record holder with 15 national titles and was elected Dutch Brass Band of the 20th Century.  
There’s a good crowd in the hall as De Wâldsang takes the stage. Their program is called Our Hidden Language (Suite for brass band, soloists and percussion) and was written by Jacob Vilhelm Larsen for Brighouse & Rastricks performance at Brass in Concert 2018. It contains of seven movements based around different elements of the dance medium:
I. Introduction
II. Cassini's Last Dance
III. Ballerina
IV. Norwegian Dance: Fanitullen
V. Washboard Watkins
VI. Berceuse
Vii. Fire dance and finale

Larsen was awarded the prize for best new composition. The Introduction is bold, there’s a lot of detail heard. Cassini’s Last Dance refers to NASA's Cassini spacecraft made its final approach to Saturn and dove into the planet's atmosphere. This is good quality playing by the Dutch band and eventually leading to a total fade out. Ballerina is a lyrical cornet solo played from within the band, elegantly played by the cornet soloist. Next on a real Norwegian Folk Dance. Rythmical and Technical stuff, convincingly played by the euphoniumplayer, before a bit of real cabaret. The cornet, who wants to take the stage, gets a tambourine and the tromboneplayer shines in a witty solo. With cornet, tuba and washboard this gives a real dixielandfeel. Now the sousaphone appears and the tromboneplayer is hit by a giant tambourine. Good humor and nicely done.  
From this craziness it’s a real contrast to the following short Berceuse. Fire Dance and Finale gives the band the opportunity to shine once more. It’s a shame that the program isn’t printed or to be seen by the audience. The audience would appreciate the music even more with some knowledge about the music. 

Brassband de Wâldsang - Rieks van der Velde 

Jugendbrassband Oberösterreich 
Jugendbrassband OÖ with much energy
The Youth Brass Band OÖ was founded out of the enthusiasm the BRASS BAND OÖ has kindled. The band plays several concerts in Upper Austria each year and can already refer to competition successes (2017: 2nd place - German Open, 2nd place - National Brass Band Competition Austria). As part of the International Tuba Euphonium Conference in Linz, the Jugendbrassband Oberösterreich played with world-famous soloists such as James Gourlay, Katrina Marzella and David Childs. In July 2017, the Jugendbrassband Oberösterreich won a gold medal at the World Youth Music Festival in Zurich! Second place at the Flemish Open in Mechelen in April 2018 is further proof of the high level of this band. The highlight so far was undoubtedly a concert tour with Stephen Mead through England, Scotland and Wales.  

Next on stage the Youth Brass Band Oberösterreich. MD is Karl Geroldinger gives us a quick look on the last moments before a band takes the stage. In a hurry the last musician enters the room, while the percussionists play their usual cardgame. And the moment comes that the band is ready to play their first work. Behind the Curtain by Ludovic Neurohr is their very appropriate choice. An opening full of spirit, a bit held back before a fine close with all the bandmembers standing. 

Jim Fieldhouse’s Nefarious gives the soloists of the band a nice chance to excell. The work is very demanding and the transparancy of the ensemble lacks a bit clarity. The accompaniment of the soloists is a touch loud, and that makes hard work for the bariton and euphonium. A quit intermezzo from Peter Graham’s Triumph of Time. Meditation is a lovely lyrical duet for Flugel and Bariton, so tastefully played.  
Enter the Galaxies by Paul Lovatt-Cooper is the next item from this great Youth Band from Austria. It takes us into the unknown. Untidy moments and problems in balance and we just wanted to hear more detail. Jacob Vilhelm Larsen’s arrangement of Can’t Nobody do me like Jesus is up next. Exciting stuff and good reactions from the audience while all musicians are standing on their feet. The finale is saved for The Incredibles, like Karl Geroldinger tells us. You must be a bit mad to play in a brass band, and therefore every brass band is incredible and after this Toccata in D minor gets a rousing performance. Not all is together in the ensemble, but it's absolutely entertaining. A standing ovation from the audience.

Jugenbrassband Oberösterreich - Karl Geroldinger

Constantijn Huygens 
BBCH lets the music do the talking
The Constantijn Huygens brass band from Appingedam The Netherlands was founded in 1894. First as a fanfare band, which was later converted to a brass band. 
Under the direction of conductor Sietse Hamersma, the brass band has achieved great successes. They won the Dutch championship in the 4th division in 1994 and 1995. In 2002 the band became Dutch champion in the 3rd division for the first time. In 2011, the "double" was even achieved. This means the championship at Eurobrass and in the same year the Dutch championship. In 2016 Constantijn Huygens gained the National title in the 2nd Division. 

Every year the band works together with a well-known soloist from home and abroad. In the past, soloists such as Renato Meli (NL), Roger Webster (UK), David Childs (UK), Brandt Attema (NL), Raf van Looveren (BE), Katrina Marzella (UK), Ido Gerard Kempenaar (NL) and Femke IJlstra (NL) were hosted. Another highlight was the trip to the Whit Friday Marches in 2007, a unique experience.  

Let the music do the talking
For a moment we were afraid that the next band would have to play without an audience but luckily some 40 people entered the hall at the last moment. A bright start for the Dutch band and MD Richard Visser.  In the slow middle movement of Osterfjorden by Stijn Aertgeerts there are moments of unease in tuning. The finale is not overdone with a nice soprano cornet on top.  
In Perfect Peace by Kenneth Downie takes us on a journey to the British Isles. It’s certainly not to stretched in tempo this, though the atmosphere is here. Harmony Festival by Jan de Haan is a tribute to J.S. Bach and a tribute to Germany. This band has chosen to let the music entertain you and it does. Harmony Festival gets a nice rendition, the musical character really comes through. Apart from some minor issues with the tuning, this was very enjoyable, maybe a bit too serious for an entertainment contest.  
This journey comes to an end with the Legends of Cyfarthfa by Matthew Hall. The opening quartet is very solid and that leads to playing with good vibes. Some untidy moments but a nice finish. Overall a very convincing performance by Constantijn Huygens.

Brass Band Constantijn Huygens - Richard Visser   

3BA Youth Band  
A colourfull start

The 3BA Youth Band is the junior brass band of German champions 3BA and was founded in 2017. Young musicians from all over Bavaria meet several times a year for rehearsal weekends and a joint brass band camp in the summer to discover and work on the brass band music together. The 3BA Youth Band celebrated a successful competition premiere in May 2018 at the first German competition for youth bands during the German Brass Band Championship. Under the direction of Sebastian Schwarz, they earned a second place. 
In addition to the regular band rehearsals, music education and body work are also part of the program. The goal is to give young people, between the ages of ten and 16, years of playfulness, stage presence and teamwork. The band is supported by a team of musicians from the 3BA Academy Band, dedicated parents and music educators. 

Friendly take-over
It’s 9 o’clock sharp as the first musician come on stage, only a flugelplayer, all kinds of groups join him, athletes, guests from a marriage, Hawaiian girls, builders and even Firefighters. We hear the first tones from the band as some victims out of hospital, so it seems, make the band complete. Then it’s to the music. A nice fresh start. It’s the flugelplayer once again who introduces the second work Friendly Take-over from Oliver Waespi. A solid opening, but after that it lacks a bit of direction. The ensemble is a little untidy in a couple of places. Good contributions from their soloists. The music picks up clarity at the end.  

I want to break free is the next piece and it is stopped by use of smartphone, drinking beer, arguing in the band etcetera. The MD doesn’t like it a bit, and gets the concentration back to the music for a moment. Then comes the vacuum cleaner. At the end the parts are thrown away and the MD quits. He is persuaded to come back on stage and What a Wonderfull World is played while the musician excuse themselves to the conductor for their behaviour. This is all good fun, a bit silly at times. The band ends the performance with an extended version of the Blues Brothers evergreen Everybody Loves Somebody.   

3BA Youth Brass Band - Sebastian Schwarz

Deutsches Musikfest Brass Band Entertainment Wettbewerb
Good morning from a sunny and already warm Osnabrück where the sixth edition of the Deutsches Musikfest has reached its third day. Every six years a different city hosts this enormous event with this time over 300 orchestra’s and ensembles, over 14.500 musicians and over 150.000 spectators. We are situated just next to the imposing Schloss Osnabrück in the OsnabrückHalle for the Brass Band Entertainment- contest, organised by the DBBV (German Brass Band Association) on behalf of the BDMV (Federal Association of German Music Associations). An interesting, although modest event within this 4-day spectacle. 

Eight Brass Bands from very different levels will compete in the beautiful Kongress-Saal today, one from Austria, two from The Netherlands and five from Germany. Adjudicators Oliver Chadik, Stefan Ametsbichler, Andreas Martin Hofmeir and Magnus Hylander will do the difficult job of sorting out which band made the biggest impact at the end of the day. 

9:00  3BA Youth Band (Germany)
9:45  Brass Band Constantijn Huygens (The Netherlands)
10:30  Jugendbrassband Oberösterreich (Austria)
11:15  Brassband De Wâldsang (The Netherlands)
12:30 Jugend Brass Band PotzBlech (Germany)
13:15 Top Floor Brass Band (Germany)
14:00  Brass Band BlechKLANG (Germany)
14:45  Nordbayerische Brass Band (Germany)
Results from 15:30