Thursday 20th November 2008 by C. Freeman
Year 12 student Oliver Newton recently performed at the Royal Albert Hall playing timpani for Youth Brass 2000. Oliver joined the band earlier this year and has already been on tour with them around Germany and Austria. They recently played at the National Festival of Music for Youth in Birmingham and won the outstanding performance category. As a result they were invited to play as part of a three-day festival at the Royal Albert Hall.
Youth Brass 2000 performed Caravan by Duke Ellington, a jazz arrangement of Favourite Things by Richard Rodgers and Louis Prima's composition, Sing, Sing, Sing during their 15-minute slot at the famous concert venue. It was the second time that Oliver has appeared at the Royal Albert Hall as he sang in a massed choir nearly a decade ago.
Oliver said: 'It was very nerve-racking looking out to see the hall filled with thousands of people but the performance was over before I'd really got into it! In rehearsal it felt like it was going on and on, but when we were there it was all over and done with. Everyone was clapping as we played through the pieces; there were whistles and cheers; it was excellent and definitely one of the best experiences I've had.'
At the Royal Albert Hall.
Oliver is studying Physics, Chemistry, Maths and Further Maths at A Level. He said: 'I'm hoping to pursue science as a career but I will carry on with music as a hobby. I play piano, clarinet, glockenspiel and xylophone.'
The band, which practices weekly at Wilbarston village hall was conducted by Peter Collins and its musical director is Lord Chris Jeans. More than 40 band members travelled down for the concert with 60 local supporters going along to cheer them on. Oliver said: 'It was probably the most important event in the band's history and both Peter and Chris were really pleased and thought the performance went really well.'
Youth Brass 2000 travelled up to Manchester on 23rd November where they participated in the Tameside Youth Brass Band Championships. The top prize was £1,000 and Youth Brass won the competition, taking home the trophy and prize money. Youth Brass 2000 scored 192 points with the second, third and fourth placed bands scoring 190,189 and 188 points respectively so it was a very hard-fought competition.