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2015 European Brass Band Championship — Introduction to Freiburg

4BR looks forward to the action in Freiburg where EBBA hosts the European Championships with a little help from the Higgs boson particle...

Nice view
A wonderful view of a wonderful city...

The 2015 European Brass Band Championship, (which starts on Wednesday 29th April) will take place in Freiburg, the historic German university and archiepiscopal city that straddles the Dreisam River on the edge of the famous Black Forest.

It is the second time the country has hosted the event - although much has changed since the last occasion in Munich in 1999 - not least the rapidly emerging brass band culture that this year sees the nation represented in the senior Championship and Challenge Sections, as well as the Development Section of the European Youth Contest.

Great credit

EBBA can take a great deal of credit for its decision to ‘host’ the championship this year - and with the ‘ganz ausverkauft’ (all sold out) signs posted for the majority of the events, it should prove to be both a commercial as well as musical success. 

The expertise that has been instilled by the likes of Kurt Bohlhalter, Arian Brun and their teams who have led the promotion and organisation has been first class.  

Comfort

The Konzerthaus venue is modern, spacious and welcoming, with the main Rolf Bohme Hall accommodating over 850 people in comfort. There is also plenty to do, see and hear from the Thursday evening onwards; from the European Youth Band and Composers Competition to the main senior contests and the European Youth Championship on the Sunday. 

Lille, Ostend and Utrecht (hosts for the next three years) may have a hard act to follow.

Frieburg Hall
Nicely laid out.... in the main hall

The time table has been sensibly laid out - with the Youth Band giving the inaugural concert in Denzlingen on Wednesday evening.

The first major title will be decided on Thursday evening with the European Composers Competition, which sees works from the talented trio of Christian Overhead, Ludovic Neurohr and Stan Nieuwenhuis come under scrutiny in performance from the international panel of Thomas Doss, Rolf Rudin and Paul Hindmarsh.

Set work

It is Rudin himself (below) who provides the intriguing set work for the Championship Section on the Friday evening, with ‘The God Particle’ - inspired by the work under taken at the CERN Large Hadron Collider in finding the Higgs boson particle.

Rolf Rudin
Finding that elusive winning formula: Composer Rolf Rudin

Collision course

The ten competitors (led by defending champion Brass Band Bugermusik Luzern) will certainly be on a collision course of musicality if they are to capture the European title, especially as the own choice selections this year have a welcome sense of aesthetic about them - the usual mind numbing blockbuster premieres noticeable by their absence. 

It is a change very much for the better - so plenty of great music for the adjudication panels of Thomas Doss, Marc Lys, Stephen Roberts, Garry Cutt, Christophe Jeanbourquin and Stig Nordhagen to enjoy in the box.

Challenge Section

Meanwhile, the Challenge Section (Saturday morning), which still seems to exist in a musical form of quantum theory only understandable by EBBA boffins, sees six bands (with defending champion Brass Band Wipptal) take to the stage to play ‘Origenes’ by Carlos Cardenas as well as their own choice selections, which range from test pieces to concert works. 

Youth Championship

Saturday evening sees the Gala Concert and awards ceremony, before the Sunday is left to the 10 bands that take part in the Development and Premier Sections of the European Youth Championship.

That should prove to be a great occasion, with competitors from England, Germany, Scotland, Norway, Lithuania, Belgium and Switzerland vying for glory on the set works ‘Patterns’ by Edward Gregson for the Development Section and ‘Arcana’ by Kevin Houben in the Premier Section.

The 4BR team is making the trip as usual to cover the event, (follow us on Twitter too at: #EBBC2015) with plenty of video interviews and features to back up our live coverage of the action as it happens.

All this and you can also watch the main Championship Section (set work and own choice), Challenge Section and Gala Concert live for yourselves (costing €12.50 for the weekend) by going to http://www.hafabralivestream.nl


Festival logo

Time table of events:

Wednesday 29th of April:
20:00:
Denzlingen
Concert European Youth Brass Band

Thursday 30th of April:
Rolf Böhme Saal - Konzerthaus Freiburg
European Composer Competition - Final
EYBB concert followed by award ceremony

Friday 1st of May:
10:00 - 11:30:
Konzerthaus Freiburg

EBBA Forum
12:00 - 13:30:
Historischer Kaufhaus – Freiburg
Opening Ceremony (invitation only)
Draw EBBC Championship Section (Set Work)
Draw EBBC Challenge Section

14:00 - 15:00:
Konzerthaus – Freiburg
EBBA Press Conference

15:30 - 16:30:
Konzerthaus – Freiburg
EBBC Composer’s talk

17:00 - 22:15:
Rolf Böhme Saal - Konzerthaus Freiburg
EBBC Championship Section Set Piece
‘The God Particle’ (Rolf Rudin)

Saturday 2nd of May:
08:00 - 08:15:
Konzerthaus Freiburg
Draw EBBC Championship section (Own Choice)

09:00 - 12:30:
Rolf Böhme Saal - Konzerthaus Freiburg
EBBC Challenge Section own choice programme
Set Work: ‘Origėnes’ by Carlos Cardėnas

12:30 - 18:00:
Rolf Böhme Saal - Konzerthaus Freiburg
EBBC Championship Section Own Choice

20:00 - 22:45:
Rolf Böhme Saal – Konzerthaus Freiburg
Gala Concert featuring Brass Band Bürgermusik Luzern and German Brass followed by Awards Ceremony

22:00 - 02:00:
Konzerthaus Freiburg
Brass Night Party

Sunday 3rd of May:
08:00 - 09:15:
Konzerthaus Freiburg
EBBA General Meeting

09:30 - 12:30:
Rolf Böhme Saal - Konzerthaus Freiburg
EYBBC: Development Section:

12:30 - 15:00:
EYBBC: Premier Section:

15:00 - 16:00:
Farewell Concert European Youth Brass Band followed by Awards Ceremony



Foden's Band - St Michaels & All Angels Church

Saturday 25 May • Egerton Road, Ashton on Ribble, Preston PR2 1AJ


St Pinnock Brass Band - Rock Choir Cornwall

Sunday 26 May • Sterts Theatre, . Sterts, . Liskeard, . PL14 5AZ PL14 5AZ


Contest: All England International Masters

Sunday 26 May • The Lighthouse Theatre, Kettering Conference Centre, Thurston Drive NN15 6PB


Lewes, Glynde and Beddingham Brass Band - Eastbourne Bandstand - 1812 concert

Wednesday 29 May • Bandstand, Grand Parade, Eastbourne BN21 3AD


Black Dyke Band - George Lawton Hall, Mossley

Thursday 30 May • George Lawton Hall, Stamford St, Mossley, Ashton-under-Lyne OL5 0HR


Lindley Band

May 24 • FRONT ROW CORNET required to join our friendly band who enjoy a sensible mix of engagements and contests. Our inspirational MD Mike Golding takes rehearsals on Monday and Wednesday evenings in our own modern bandroom located only 1m from M62 Jcn 24.


Littleport Brass Band

May 24 • Littleport Brass are currently a second section band in Cambridgeshire and rehearse every Wednesday evening 7.30-9.30. We are looking for an Eb bass and tuned percussionist. We are a friendly, active band playing at a variety of exciting concerts.


Stannington Brass Band

May 23 • A rare opportunity has arisen to join one of Sheffield's leading bands with a vacancy for an EEb TUBA PLAYER to complete our bass section. We have a good band room atmosphere and a calendar of interesting concerts and contests.


Alan Fernie

DRSAM, Dip.NCOS
Arranger, composer, adjudicator, conductor