2004 Norwegian National Championships
February 13th - 15th
4BR will be in Bergen to to report back from the 25th Norwegian
For the second successive year, 4BR will be packing the thermal
underwear and taking a short break to head for the 25th running
of the Norwegian National Brass Band Championships. Who would have
thought that when the contest first started in 1979 it would blossom
into an event of this magnitude.
The Norwegians at first copied what they had seen and heard at
the Royal Albert Hall, but instead of letting the contest become
gentrified they made amendments to the way in which they wanted
it to be run, and more importantly to the way in which they thought
it should develop successfully. Whatever the ups and downs, they
now have a “Nationals” to rank with any other throughout
the banding world.
For the “Elite Section” the format is now much the
same as the European Championships – a set work and own choice
amalgam spread over two days. It has certainly made for some exciting
contests over the past few years, and last year in particular was
a cracker. Stavanger under the mercurial talents of David King won
the title, topping both sections of the contest to win by 1.5 points
from Eikanger. Both of these bands gave jaw dropping own choice
However, the real joy of Bergen (certainly not the price of beer)
is the fact that so many of the bands push themselves to the limit
(and in many cases, a bit to far for their own good) and the own
choices selections of many competitors is ambitious to say the least.
This year is no exception with “Variations on a Ninth”
being picked by one Fourth Division band. Now that’s what
call ambitious. The top bands will have to get to grips with a bit
of “Graffiti” – so that should be interesting
to say the least.
It should make for a great weekend though, and 4BR will give regular
updates each day and night to tell you how it is all planning out.
We hope to get some interviews from the great and the good, and
will post the results up on the site the moment we get them.
We will of course soak up all the atmosphere, will remember we
are ambassadors for our country, and will try to keep in touch with
what is happening from the Millennium Stadium. 62 bands or Wales
winning in style at rugby? As long as the boys in red win, we think
we can make the sacrifice.
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