Interview and personal profile: Andrew King
British Open Solo Champion 2000 and 2001
Being regarded as the best at something is a pretty good achievement
when you are 37 years of age, let alone 17, so when we asked Andrew
King what it felt like to crowned as the best soloist in the UK
at the age where its still illegal to buy a celebratory pint
of lager, we thought he may a little over excited by the fact. Not
a bit of it.
When we talked to him, this very modest young man just thanked us
for our congratulations and said he felt fortunate to have been
able to win. No wild celebrations then?
Not really. I was pleased to have been able to win the title
again, especially as it gives me the chance to represent Great Britain
in Australia in February next year, but I know Ive still got
a lot to learn before I can consider myself a really top class player.
There were some great players there on the day who also played well
enough to take the title, so I feel I was fortunate.
Nice to know that someone at 17 still feels they have a lot to learn,
especially as most 17 year olds we come across in life seem to know
absolutely bleeding everything. It seems the young chap has a very
serious and thoughtful head upon his shoulders, and this was borne
out when we asked him about his choice of solo for his defence
Bluebells of Scotland by the legendary Arthur Pryor.
It made sense to me as its a great piece that means
you can really show off your technique without bursting your lip
in the process. My band also wanted me a play a solo at the forthcoming
Brass in Concert Contest at Spennymoor, so it made even better sense
to be able to be well prepared for that as well.
See what we mean? There are not too many soloists out there we know
of would put band before self glory, so we think this earmarks Andrew
King out as just a little bit special and very focused in what he
wants to achieve. He sees the whole picture.
Andrew started his playing at the Dobcross Youth Band a real
hot bed of talent before moving to the Marple band. Just over a
year ago he joined Leyland on solo trombone, whilst he has also
been a member of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain
(winning the Harry Mortimer Trophy two years in a row) and getting
to the semi final of the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition
in 2000. Remember we are talking about someone who is just
Still, banding is only part of a very busy life and he enjoys other
things as well especially Liverpool FC! The focus for him
however is very much on a professional musical career.
I want to be able to become a trombone soloist in my own right,
be that with an orchestra or within the banding world, but I know
Ill have to do more than just play solos. Theres so
much more to becoming a great player, and Ive only just started
With this in mind hes still studying for his A levels in history
and music and hopes he will be able to obtain the academic qualifications
necessary for him to study at a Conservatoire. In the mean time
though hes continuing to make a reputation for himself within
the banding world as Principal trombone at the Leyland Band
a position he really enjoys.
I love it at Leyland. The band is now playing really well
and the people are great and give me plenty of support and opportunities
to do some solo work. Hopefully we can win Spennymoor and get closer
to winning either the Open or Nationals next year. That would be
a real thrill for me.
The win at the British Open Solo Championships means a trip to Australia
in February to compete in the Ern Keller International Soloist of
the Year Contest in Sydney. In addition he has just come back from
the first of what we believe will be many solo jobs in Norway when
he performed as a guest soloist and his phone is starting to ring
more often with offers to perform in the UK as a solo artist. The
£350 first prize has already gone into his bank account (It
needed it! he says), so things cant be better can they.
The only problem is for me that the Sydney contest takes place
the day after my 18th birthday, so I wont be able to celebrate
the night before!
Judging by the way he plays, 4BarsRest thinks that the 24 hour break
will most probably coincide with a delayed 18th birthday and celebratory
beer or two with the International Ern Keller title stuck under
his arm for good measure. We wish him well.
Andrew King In Short
Born: 15th February 1984
First Band: Dobcross Youth
Subsequent Bands: Marple and Leyland
Current Band: Principal Trombone of the Leyland Band since
Greatest Influences: My father and family, plus listening
to people like Jo Alessi and Ian Bousefield.
Best Moment: Winning the British Open Solo Championships
this year and watching Liverpool beat Manchester United any time.
Worse Moment: The usual trombone nightmare slide stuck.
Anyone beating Liverpool.
Motto: You only get out what you put in - borrowed
off someone I know!
Achievements as a player: British Open Solo Champion 2000
and 2001. Semi Finalist BCC Young Musician of the Year 2000. Harry
Mortimer Trophy Winner 1999 and 2000.
Instrument: Conn Christian Lindberg 88H. Vincent Bach 5G
Who would you like to be marooned on a desert island with?
Jennifer Lopez (In my dreams!)
Coronation Street or Eastenders? Coronation Street of course!
Football Team: Liverpool FC.
Most Difficult Solo: Simon Willis Trombone Concerto
Absolutely rock hard!
Most Difficult Test Piece: Albion Stamina
. Need I say more?
Ambitions: To become a professional top class trombone
Heroes: Jo Alessi and Michael Owen
Advice to young players: Hard work and keep practicing