Welcome aboard

Welcome to the City of Chester Band website. Here you can catch up on latest news, find out about our learner band , training band and main band and who to contact for further information.

We also have a band facebook , Twitter and instagram feed. 

We would love to hear from you whether it's to join a band, book a band or just say hello . 

Enjoy. 

What's new

Player vacancies

7

25/08/2017

The City of Chester Band (a registered charity) has vacancies for front row cornet players (including Principal) and bass players (Eb/BBb tubas).With our Musical Director, Ewan Easton MBE (Principal Tuba, Hallé Orchestra), we work hard on getting the basics right in music and instrumental technique, with the objective of playing and enjoying more interesting music.It is not an objective achieved overnight, but with Ewan’s help (e.g. one-to-one tutorials) we are heading in the right direction.Rehearsals are held on Mondays and Wednesdays from 8 to 10 pm, with tutorials between 7 and 8 pm.We also have a Training Band which meets on Mondays (6:00 to 7:30) during term times.A third section band, we usually enter contests each spring (NW regional and Whit Friday) and autumn (Rochdale).

A particular welcome (regardless of instrument and playing standard) is extended to folks coming to Chester University this autumn.We will be playing on the Chester Town Hall square on Sunday 24 September around lunch-time so come along and introduce yourself.

Our band room, in Bedward Row, is close to the city centre.

To join us on our journey of improvement please contact Kirsty Blain on 07816457017 or Matthew McCleary on 07779957711.See, also, our Facebook page: City of Chester Brass and Twitter: https://twitter.com/devabrass.

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Vacancies

7

24/07/2017

The City of Chester Band (a registered charity) has vacancies for front row cornet players (including Principal) and tuba players (Eb/BBb).With our Musical Director, Ewan Easton MBE (Principal Tuba, Hallé Orchestra), we work hard on getting the basics right in music and instrumental technique, with the objective of playing and enjoying more interesting music.It is not an objective achieved overnight, but with Ewan’s help (e.g. one-to-one tutorials) we are heading in the right direction.Rehearsals are held on Mondays and Wednesdays from 8 to 10 pm.Our band room is close to the city centre.

If you would like to join us on our journey of improvement please contact Kirsty Blain on 07816457017 or Matthew McCleary on 07779957711.

We also have Training (11-70+) and Junior (7-11) Bands which meet weekly during term times.From September a conductor is needed for the Training Band, to work with Ewan in developing players for the future.Contact Tony Blain (07913109951) if you are interested.

City of Chester Training Band - Press release

7

11/07/2017

City of Chester Training Band – Press release

The City of Chester Training Band is about to take a break over the summer holidays after a momentous first half of the year.In the spring a new training ensemble aimed specifically at children aged 7 – 11 was established under the direction of the Hallé Orchestra’s tuba player Ewan Easton MBE: the City of Chester Junior Band.Gradually the Junior Band is developing and membership is rising following a series of short promotional concerts in local primary schools given by members of the main City of Chester and Training Bands.[Attached is a picture taken at a recent taster session where children (and their teachers!) got chance to play a brass instrument.]

Aldford Village Hall was again the scene on Sunday afternoon on Sunday 2 July for the City of Chester Training Band’s annual solo competition.Eight members played a piece of music of their own choice before the adjudicator, Robert MacDonald who plays Flugel Horn with the main Band.

The winner was 15-year old Robert Tarver from Llay, playing a lyrical melody of his own composition on the cornet.Robert joins Kirsty Blain in having won the competition twice in its 17 years and he has also gone on to follow Kirsty into playing with the City of Chester Band (a registered charity).

Before the adjudication started, all entrants to the competition warmed up by playing a short band concert under the direction of conductor, Paul Donoghue.Paul has stepped in to conduct the Training Band after Chris Hardy had to step down due to ill health; a replacement for Chris is being sought for September onwards.The concert resumed after the competition whilst adjudicator Robert MacDonald gathered his thoughts together before commenting on each competitor’s performance and announcing the winner. [Robert Tarver is pictured receiving the winner’s Margaret Blythin Memorial Trophy from Robert MacDonald.]

All entrants were praised by the adjudicators for entering the competition and for their determination in playing solo before an audience, never an easy matter.Tips were given on preparation, presentation, style, technique and posture.

The afternoon concluded with the presentation of medallions and certificates to all the competitors, a buffet and raffle.

Chris Hardy’s efforts with the Training Band and his overall dedication to rehearsing and playing led City of Chester Band’s Musical Director (MD) Ewan Easton MBE to award the MD’s Player of the Year award to Chris. at the recent annual general meeting of the City of Chester Band. [Pictured is Chris Hardy receiving his award from Ewan Easton.]

Anyone interested in joining the City of Chester Training Band should contact Tony Blain on 07913109951.

Our Swiss friends

7

21/06/2017

The City of Chester Band is always pleased to welcome players visiting Chester, none more so than when they're students at English in Chester, Chester's language school.For many years, the City of Chester Band has had young players from Europe (Switzerland, mainly) join for the duration of their course.Friendships are made and it's always sad when the time comes for their return.

The latest temporary recruits to the Band have been two Swiss: Julian Burkhard (euphonium) from Beromonster in the canton of Lucerne and Andrin Buehler (Tenor Trombone) from Hohenrain, also of the same canton.Julian plays in Musikgesellschaft Eich, while Andrin is a member of Musikgesellschaft Hohenrain.


Both come from musical families.During their time with the City of Chester Band they have enjoyed working under the Band’s Musical Director, Ewan Easton MBE.

For both the musical highlight was taking part in the Whit Friday March Contests with City of Chester.These competitions have been held since 1884 and originally concluded religious celebrations when workers were given the day off.On a balmy summer evening on 9 June Julian and Andrin rubbed shoulders with musicians from all over the UK and Europe as bands moved around villages (travelling in coaches) in the Saddleworth and Tameside districts playing their chosen quick-step march. Competitions usually start around 4 pm and close around 11.

City of Chester played in six of the nine competitions in Saddleworth; the number of competing bands in each contest ranged from 48 to 81 with City of Chester getting placed roughly in the middle of the pack comprising bands of all standards, it being a third section band.

In Uppermill there was a brief opportunity for Julian and Andrin to see one of the three visiting Swiss brass bands which featured in the prizes.The evening was topped off in Denshaw where City of Chester played their last contest.It was 10:30 and band members were relaxing over their favourite cup of Darjeeling (!) before boarding the coach home but the return was delayed when the famous Black Dyke Band drove into town to play in the competition, enabling members to listen to, and appreciate, their performance and where Dyke earned the 1st prize of £1,000.

On return to Switzerland Andrin will transfer to a school where he will work on a farm for 4 days with 1 day spent in the classroom.Julian is to begin a course studying economics.The City of Chester Band wish to place on record their appreciation of Andrin and Julian's playing and friendship over the past few months and wish them every success in the future.Attached are photos of Julian Burkhard (euphonium) and Andrin Buehler (tenor trombone) in City of Chester band uniforms on the evening of the Whit Friday march contests in Uppermill.

April Player of the Month

4

08/05/2017

The april 2017 Player of the Month has been given to John Pattison for his hard work and always ready to help out and even when he "messes up" he always has a smile on his face.

A good day at Blackpool

7

28/02/2017

A press release was sent recently to our local papers relating to the City of Chester Band travelling to Blackpool on Sunday 26 February to compete in the NW Regional Championships of the National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain. The Band were placed sixth out of eighteen bands in the Third Section. Commenting on the outcome Musical Director Ewan Easton MBE said he was proud of the Band's performance, a good team effort. The journey of improvement continues and Ewan looks forward to working further with the Band.

Other bands in mid- and south Cheshire enjoyed varying degrees of success. The famous Foden Band, from Elworth, Sandbach will be playing in the Royal Albert Hall, London in October after winning the Championship Section at Blackpool, The Crewe-based Co-operative Funeral Care Band were placed fourth, narrowly missing out on also qualifying to play in the finals while Roberts Bakery Band, from Northwich, were placed 11th. In the Second Section the Winsford-based Cheshire Constabulary Band qualified for the National Finals to be held in Cheltenham in September, being placed second. In the same section Crewe Brass came fifth.

Our new Junior Band

7

31/01/2017

City of Chester Band (a registered charity)

Press Release

In 2000 the City of Chester Band formed a training band which has gone from strength to strength, with a number progressing to playing in the main band and one on to study music at university.All who have played in the Training Band have benefitted from developing their life skills.

The City of Chester Band is now developing a new opportunity for children who want to take up music.It has teamed up with the Musical Routes Music Education Hub, which is the music education hub for Wirral and Cheshire West and Chester Councils, to form a Junior Band.The partnership will enhance the music services aimed at children aged 7 to 11 (Key Stage 2).

A key driver of this initiative has been Ewan Easton MBE, the City of Chester Band’s Musical Director, who is passing on his extensive experience of teaching the playing of brass instruments to people of all ages and levels of ability.Raw beginners begin learning in a fun environment such matters as the importance of maintaining a relaxed but upright posture, one which supports deep breaths being taken which enable players to play fluently.Ewan is being assisted by a number of players from the main band.DBS checks are being carried out on all involved with the Junior Band.

The Junior Band meets on Mondays in term time between 6:00 and 7:00 at St Luke’s Church, Chester Road, Huntington, CH3 6BT.Tuition is free but there is a small charge to offset the cost of room hire.Children on reaching 11 will be invited to progress to the Training Band which comprises young people aged up to 80!

Parents/guardians who think their children would like to learn to play a brass instrument should contact Tony Blain ([email protected] or tel: 07913109951).

Hoole Christmas Lights Switch On 2016

4

21/11/2016

The crowds were out on Saturday night in Hoole for the Christmas Lights switch. on It may have been 2 degrees but the band played on and what a show they put on for the public , the band along with Dee 106.3 kept the crowds entertained until the fireworks went of and the lights came on. Well done to all the members you played really well.


Press release – 11 November 2016

7

15/11/2016

What is it about Swiss people and their interest in brass bands?Over the years the City of Chester Band has welcomed a number of men and women who have travelled to Chester in order to improve their English at a local language college and who also play a brass instrument.Currently playing with the Band is Hervé Parisod, from Lausanne.He joined the Band in August and has proved to be a constant, missing few rehearsals and engagements.Hervé played a leading part with the Band when it performed in the NW Brass Bands Association Championships, held in Rochdale in October.

Back home, Hervé plays cornet with La Fanfare de Crissier (http://www.fanfare-crissier.ch/?page=accueil) , a British-style brass band playing in the second tier of competing brass bands in Switzerland (approximately 115 at all levels).Hervé, 25, who has a degree in electronics engineering, has been playing cornet for 11 years.His grandfather played brass instruments, too, and brother plays percussion, also in the Crissier band.

Chester’s language college was Hervé’s choice as he preferred to live in a small, quiet city close to the north of England which he wanted to see more of.During his stay Hervé has paid visits to Snowdonia, the Lake District and the Peak District.Cities visited include Liverpool, Manchester, York and Edinburgh, London having been visited on an earlier visit to southern England.Also during his stay in Chester Hervé has developed an appreciation of local and regional real ales!

For two senior members of Chester’s band, Philip Mottershead and Les Platt, there is a link with Lausanne for they were part of the City of Chester Band when it toured Switzerland in 1982.A memorable concert was given in the gardens of the casino in Lausanne against the backdrop of Lake Geneva and the French Alps.

While Hervé’s favourite top brass bands are the world-famous Black Dyke Band from Yorkshire and the Cory Band from the Rhondda Valley in South Wales, we hope that he will always keep a place in his heart for the City of Chester.Band members have certainly enjoyed his company and support and we will be sorry to see him return to Switzerland in December.Bon voyage Hervé!

Solo Competition 2016

7

11/10/2016

Aldford Village Hall was the scene on Sunday afternoon (9 October) for the City of Chester Training Band’s annual solo competition.Ten members, whose ages range from 10 to 77, played a piece of music of their own choice before an adjudication panel comprising Peter Dalton, a long-standing personal tutor to many Training Band members, and Paul Donoghue, Chairman of the City of Chester Band and Soprano Cornet player within the main band.

The adjudicators commented on the high standard of playing throughout the afternoon awarding the Margaret Blythin shield to Deborah Roberts (the winner’s shield is dedicated to a former player).Deborah, who joined the Training Band earlier this year, started playing on the Eb Tenor Horn six years ago and is currently preparing to take her Grade 6 music exam.

Before the adjudication started, all ten entrants to the competition warmed up their lips and instruments by playing a short band concert under the direction of their conductor, Chris. Hardy.The concert resumed after the competition during which the adjudicators gathered their thoughts before commenting on each competitor’s performance and announcing the winner.

All entrants were praised by the adjudicators for entering the competition and for their determination in playing solo before an audience, never an easy matter.Tips were given on preparation, presentation, style, technique and posture.

The afternoon concluded with the presentation of medallions and certificates to all the competitors, a buffet and raffle.

Pictures show the winner Deborah Roberts, all the competitors with Chris Hardy and Tony Blain, Training Band Co-ordinator, who organised the event.