Our first concert of the year was held in the delightful St. Martin's Church, Womersley as has become regular event for the band. It has become something of a tradition that we start off our new programme of music here and this always makes it an event we look forward to very much.
There was nearly a complete band for the event this year making it another tight fit to squeeze the band in, in front of the audience, with the percussion section behind the screen (but still audible). The concert was a few weeks later than normal this year and we had used the extra time to rehearse plenty of pieces for the event. The result was a polished performance full of atmosphere and it was very appreciated by the eager audience.
There were several highlights but one particularly worth mentioning was Steve Sainty's Eb Bass solo performance of "Tuba Smarties" which was deservedly loved by the audience.
After our finale their Reverend gave kindly gave us special praise which was reflected by the energetic applause from the audience. There followed some lovely refreshments as usual, all prepared by the organisers. This is the favourite concert of the year for many of the players, and we already look forward to performing in this lovely church again next year.
We were approached by the people of The Parish Church of St. Edmund in Kellington to perform an evening of music for them as part of their fund raising efforts to go towards their church restoration funds. The proceeds from this event are going towards heating improvements within the church.
It was a bit of a tight fit, and yours truly had to be positioned at the back of the choir stalls some 10M behind the rest of the band due to space constraints. But like many such church halls, the sound of the band was enhanced within the walls and the concert showed off the band's hard rehearsal work excellently, with Steve Sainty's solo of "Tuba Smarties" probably being the highlight once again. The lovely home made refreshments at the interval were very welcome and gave several of us a chance to chat to people there, making new friends I'm sure. The audience, though quite small, enjoyed the performance and we were given really warm applause as the concert came to an end. We have already been asked back in the future and I've been told that many other people in the village have heard how good the performance was, that they expect to have more people in the audience for the next concert.
Derek Curtis, the current President of the Pontefract Rotarians, was coming towards the end of his tenure in the position, and had invited many of the executives from the local Rotarian groups and their partners along with many active members of their groups to a special dinner to commemorate his time as president and thank everyone for all their work during that time. KCB had been invited to provide background music as guests arrived and for a short session during the evening itself. The band performed extremely well in the surroundings, not overwhelming the room but still playing in a sensitive and controlled manor. Despite the evening overrunning by nearly an hour, it was a special evening very fitting for the occasion.
Our friends at St. John's Church in Goole had invited us back in 2012 to perform another concert in their lovely Church. This has become a special venue for the band over recent years and we like to make this programme match the occasion.
It was a lovely sunny day as we arrived to perform an afternoon concert here. This was a new format for Goole, but the audience were asked if they preferred it and it seems they do, so similar events in the future will probably be in the afternoon again.
The concert itself included many new pieces that the band has been preparing for our summer 2012 season, and these were being performed in front of an audience for the first time. As usual they provided light refreshments at the interval and the second half continued the selection of new and some older favourites, and they wouldn't let us go without an encore. After the performance, Beryl said she believed this was our best performance for them and the appreciation from the audience seemed to collaborate her kind words. We look forward to returning to Goole for our next performance here.
A photographs from this event can be found on our gallery pages.
The forecast for the day hadn't been exciting, but it kindly stayed dry as the band set up in the small band stand in Selby Park and also throughout the performance. There was a nice gathering of people who pulled up chairs to watch and listen to us play. At the time, we had not been able to collect the two timpani drums which had been offered on temporary loan following the recent stolen trailer and instruments situation, so the band's marching drum was an improvised replacement for the event. Not ideal but better than nothing. At least we had been able to buy back our old trailer from Swillington Trailers who have helped us out following the theft, so at least we are able to attend concerts again.
The first half went well with plenty of enthusiastic response from the ever increasing audience. At the interval most of the band found their way to a small ice cream road side cart for a well earned treat, and then onto the second session which continued the good performance of the first half. At the end, the collection buckets contained a quite a bit of cash from the generous members of the public which has been added to the replacement trailer fund.
We were asked to perform at a residential home in York where they were holding their annual open day event. This event is organised by their local Mason's group and is always a spectacular affair, with many stalls of food, games, puzzles and even a classic car show. Unfortunately the weather was not as spectacular as the event, with lots of rain throughout the day. This resulted in the band performing indoors on a small stage which wasn't large enough to accommodate the whole band. So the percussion section had to set-up in front of the stage and in front of the band, in total contrast to our normal set-up where percussion is usually positioned at the back. But we made the most of the situation and gave them a good performance as the visitors to the event passed back and forward between all the stalls in the room we were in.
Despite playing sensitively to our surroundings, we were informed that our music was actually finding its way throughout the whole building so people were able to listen to us in other parts of the building as they enjoyed all the stalls and entertainment that had been organised for this event. We look forward to be given the chance to return and entertain the visitors to their open day in future years.
What a wonderful evening of great music we had. Many of the audience have said it was one of our best performances. I'm putting together a collection of photographs from the evening, and will put those up on the site, along with a fuller description of the evening's entertainment when I get a chance (house extension/new kitchen project taking up a lot of my time currently).
We were more than happy to be invited by our good friends at the Central Methodist Church to perform a concert as part of their month-long celebrations to mark the 60th Anniversary of their Church, which was officially opened on 28th October 1952. There was a whole month of events planned to mark this special occasion and KCB perform a concert in the church hall as a special final event to mark he end of the celebrations.
A lot of preparation had gone into this concert, which turned out to be worth every minute. The hall was almost full, and many people were there mostly to support the church at this special time to them, so had not seen the band perform before. However, the band played out of their skins and this was extremely delighted to everyone there, even those who had not originally thought they were going to enjoy a brass band concert.
Wonderful standing solos by Steve Jones and Matthew Armitage were also supported by other solo sections from Trevor Bedford, Kathryn Lee and Alex Higgins. But to be honest most of the band put in great performances making the whole concert to delight both to see and also to perform in. The audience were very appreciative in their applause and Jim, the compare for the concert, was extremely kind in his remarks to the band.
It was a great afternoon of music and we wish the church well for their next 60 years! We hope to continue to be a part of it.
We continued to support St. Andrew's church with their Remembrance Day service again in 2012. It was a lovely cold and crisp but beautifully sunny November morning this year. As always the church filled with people from local organisations and groups and the local people of course. The Band lead hymns during the Remembrance service and Eucharist, before we all lined up outside as the band lead the procession from the church to the cenotaph for 11:00am. Here the traditional service of Remembrance continued with hymns and prayers. Steve Jones performed a wonderfully moving rendition of the Last Post full of emotion perfect for the occasion which was followed by the traditional two minutes silence of remembrance. Steve then performed Reveille as the service continued, with the full band accompanying the hymns at the Cenotaph.
We shall remember them ...
We returned to the village of Hillam in North Yorkshire again this year, as we have become central to their festive celebrations during the turning on of their Christmas Lights. Despite being a small community, this is one of the best organised events we attend and it is a delight to be a part of the celebrations. As usual there was lots going on and the available warm mulled wine and mince pies were very welcome. At least the weather was better than in some recent years so we didn't get soaked, but there were still quite a few numb fingers by the end as it was still a cold evening.
This year's concert was entitled "Strictly Come Christmas" capturing the popularity of the TV series reaching the semi-final on the same day. It showcased many tunes from the Christmas editions of Strictly Come Dancing of recent years and also threw in a couple James Bond items to reflect the 50th anniversary of the first James Bond film shown in 1962.
To go alongside the main Dance and James Bond music, there will was plenty of our regular up-beat festive music, plus lots of seasonal fun and frolics including a visit from from Father Christmas himself.
There were very favourable comments from people as they left the hall at the end of the concert, and Graham continued to get wonderful feedback in the days and weeks following the event.
The residence of Willow Park and their family and guests really enjoyed the playing of many Christmas Carols which many of them joined in with the singing. It is a delight to see their faces come alight to our playing. We have already been invitied back for a similar event next year.