Blackpool Spring Festival 2014
26 April 2014

I'm looking forward to conducting Regent Brass in the British Open Championships Spring Festival 2014 in the Winter Gardens Blackpool on Saturday, April 26 2014.
The competitions comprising the Grand Shield, Senior Cup and Senior Trophy will take place at the refurbished Winter Gardens complex on Saturday 26th April with bands competing under the specific British Open rules. All three works have not been used before at the British Open or Spring Festival.

Grand Shield
Bands hoping to make the step up to the British Open itself will have to overcome Peter Graham’s ‘On Alderley Edge’ - originally written for the 1997 National Championships of Great Britain Finals at the Royal Albert Hall.

Inspired by the north Cheshire village of the same name and its surrounding landmarks such as ‘Wizard’s Well’, ‘Stormy Point’ and ‘The Devil’s Grave’, it is a musical portrayal of an area of outstanding natural beauty - a nostalgic tone poem that refers to the mysterious features of the landscape as well as to the imagination, from the ‘Wolf Glen’s’ scene in the Weber opera ‘Der Freischutz’ to the imminent arrival of the 1588 Spanish Armada.

Senior Cup
Bands wishing to claim one of the qualifying places in the Grand Shield will also have to overcome a work first used competitively at the National Finals in 1990, and which has since become one of the most popular test pieces in banding repertoire.

George Lloyd’s ‘English Heritage’ was originally commissioned for the Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission, English Heritage in 1987, and received its first performance by Black Dyke and Grimethorpe Colliery bands at a Kenwood Lakeside Concert in 1998.

It has since been used on many competitive occasions - including most recently as the set work for the National Championship Area contests in 2010.

Senior Trophy
The classic Frank Wright arrangement of ‘Les Francs Juges’ by Hector Berlioz will provide a stern test of the bands in the Senior Trophy.

The original overture to the unfinished opera was written in 1826 and later revised, with Frank Wright arranging it for brass band for the 1961 National Championships of Great Britain.

It has subsequently become both a concert and contest favourite, used most recently as the set work at the National Finals in 2006.

More details available at
thebritishopen.net/springfestival.html
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