2010 US Open Brass Band Championship - Runners and Riders


4BR takes a look at the cast list of entertainers lined up for our enjoyment this weekend at the Dellora Norris Cultural Arts Center in St. Charles, Illinois.

Brass Band of Central FloridaBrass Band of Central Florida
MD: Chad Shoopman
4BR Ranking: 92

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Bob Hinckley
Euphonium: Jeremiah Hemphill
Soprano: Dee McAfee
Trombone: Kerry Couch
Horn: Warren Kus
Flugel: John Copella
Baritone: Steve Hewitt
Eb Tuba: John Mark Hemphill
Bb Tuba: Bob Tucker
Percussion: Karen Sweat

US Open Record
Appearances: 7
Debut: 2003
Best Result: Won in 2004, 2005, 2006

Last 5 Years
2009: 2nd (Garasi)
2008: 2nd (Garasi)
2007: 2nd (Garasi)
2006: 1st (Garasi)
2005: 1st (Garasi)

The BBCF, with their new conductor Chad Shoopman is finally hitting on all cylinders again, and appear to be back in top form. Look for plenty of fireworks this year...with a revamped cornet and tenor horn section, the BBCF aims to put together it's strongest show to date.

Player to listen out for: Bob Hinckley – He will be anchoring the improved cornet section.

DublinDublin Silver Band
MD: Tim Jameson
4BR Ranking: N/A

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Tony Philip
Euphonium: Grant Jameson
Soprano: Raquel Rodriguez
Trombone: Josh Jameson
Horn: Rachel Hockenberry
Flugel: George Zonders
Baritone: Diana Herak
Eb Tuba: Patrick Herak
Bb Tuba: Will Roesch
Percussion: Amanda Lyon

US Open Record
Appearances: 2 (as the Ohio Brass Band)
Debut: 2008
Best Result: 4th (2008 & 2009)

Last 5 Years
2009: 4th (Zilincik)
2008: 4th (Droste)
2007: DNC
2006: DNC
2005: DNC

This band has always been innovative and entertaining, breaking the mould for this contest.  This year they have solidified their solo seats with some experienced brass banders and look to make a run musically as well.

Players to listen out for: In addition to Tony Philip and Raquel Rodriguez (both past winners of best cornet), Grant Jameson – the 16-year old has already lived up to much of his amazing potential on euphonium.

Eastern IowaEastern Iowa Brass Band
MD: Joshua Thompson
4BR Ranking: N/A

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Paul Waech
Euphonium: Todd Bransky
Soprano: Dennis Modracek
Trombone: Matt Driscoll
Horn: Judy Stine
Flugel: Dan Davies
Baritone: Melissa Karr
Eb Tuba: Dawn Stephens
Bb Tuba: Bob Driggs
Percussion: Dave Huntley

US Open Record
Appearances: 6
Debut: 2003
Best Result: 3rd (2008)

Last 5 Years
2009: 5th (Thomas)
2008: 3rd (Thomas)
2007: 4th (Thomas)
2006: 5th (Dickinson)
2005: 6th (Dickinson)

The band made great strides under their former MD (Casey Thomas) and will look forward to getting back into the mix their new MD. Every band has their "Clowns" and Eastern Iowa are hoping to put our "best clowns forward."

Player to listen out for: Dan Davies – their flugel has always done a great job anchoring the horn section

Fountain City Brass BandFountain City Brass Band
MD: Joe Parisi
4BR Ranking: 29

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Chris Larios
Euphonium: Lee Harrelson
Soprano: Steve Molloy
Trombone: William Hess
Horn: Helen Tyler
Flugel: Matthew Vangjel
Baritone: Brian Scott
Eb Tuba: Charles Page
Bb Tuba: Scott Watson
Percussion: Theodore Musick

US Open Record
Appearances: 6
Debut: 2004
Best Result: 1st Place

Last 5 Years
2009: 1st Place
2008: 1st Place
2007: 1st Place
2006: 3rd Place
2005: 3rd Place

Fountain City are the band in North America to beat at the moment.  They have handled the pressure of defending champions several times before.  Will anybody be able to catch them this year?

Players to listen out for: William Hess – their trombone player won the 2009 Scottish Open Brass Band Championships Best Soloist Prize and Nate Gay - will attempt to win his third U.S. Open Best Soloist Prize (euphonium). 

James MadisonJames Madison University Brass Band
MD: Kevin Stees
4BR Ranking: 71

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Chris Walton
Euphonium: Sean Macomber
Soprano: Mike Huffman
Trombone: Leland Matsumura
Horn: Rachel Drane
Flugel: Rob Specketer
Baritone: Nathan Gredler
Eb Tuba: Josh Feehs
Bb Tuba: Chris Reitz
Percussion: Jamieson Carr

US Open Record
Appearances: 0
Debut: 2010
Best Result: N/A

Last 5 Years
2009: DNC
2008: DNC
2007: DNC
2006: DNC
2005: DNC

The band would love nothing more than to celebrate its 10th anniversary with a US Open title.  Kevin Stees has done a great job developing brass banders at their university, often times bringing in guest artists (David Childs and Les Niesh are due to visit in the next few months).

Player to listen out for: The band has many fine principal players that will be featured, but keep an extra eye out for Chris Walton, their solo cornet.

Madison Brass BandMadison Brass Band
MD: Craig Mason
4BR Ranking: N/A

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Matt Sundell
Euphonium: David Woolpert
Soprano: Nathan Pierce
Trombone: Steven Nickels
Horn: Andrea Palm
Flugel: Jessica Lovejoy
Baritone: Dave Braun
Eb Tuba: Kegan Back
Bb Tuba: Bill Burdick

US Open Record
Appearances: 2
Debut: 2008
Best Result: 5th

Last 5 Years
2009: 8th
2008: 5th
2007: DNC
2006: DNC
2005: DNC

Player to listen out for:  Matt Sundell – principal cornet will be one of their featured soloists.

After a good debut, Madison had a poor result last year and will be looking to put that behind them.  Can they get back in the mix?

Prairie Brass BandPrairie Brass Band
MD: Dallas Niermeyer
4BR Ranking: N/A

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Karen Griffin
Euphonium: Paul Eakley
Soprano: Mark Fenne
Trombone: Sam Hildebrand
Horn: Mary Gingrich
Flugel: Randy Micheletti
Baritone: Carolyn Sparks
Eb Tuba: Ty Heuer
Bb Tuba: Pete Ploegman

US Open Record
Appearances: 7
Debut: 2003
Best Result: 4th

Last 5 Years
2009: 7th
2008: 6th
2007: 5th
2006: 4th
2005: 4th

The hosts for the contest have been victims of their own success. That is, they keep getting better and better bands to compete, which has made the going much more difficult for them. This year, Captain Niermeyer will set sail on the HMS Prairie with the goal of a top half finish.

Weston Silver BandWeston Silver Band
MD: Larry Shields
4BR Ranking: N/A

Principal Players
Principal Cornet: Brad Norton
Euphonium: Rob Miller
Soprano: Craig Robertson
Trombone: Joel Green
Horn: Dave Stevens
Flugel: Cathy Webb
Baritone: Theresa MacDonald
Eb Tuba: Eric Probst
Bb Tuba: Ian Feenstra
Percussion: Jonathan Hann

US Open Record
Debut: 2009
Best Result: 3rd

Last 5 Years
2009: 3rd
2008: DNC
2007: DNC
2006: DNC
2005: DNC

Celebrating their 90th anniversary with a 2010 Hannaford Cup victory in April, the band has been continuing to improve and grow musically.  They’ll look to compete for a prize-winning finish, but can the entertainment portion of the program catch up to the other bands’ Yankee ingenuity?

Players to listen out for: Brad Norton (cornet) and Rob Miller (euphonium) – both were featured last year and lead the way for the band which earned 3rd (out of nine) in music.


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