*
banner

Foden's to celebrate centenary of cornet great

A new work will be premiered by Foden's Band to celebrate the centenary of the death of the great cornet player Edwin Firth.

Firth
  The young Edwin Firth was regarded as a cornet prodigy

2018 will see Foden's Band celebrate the 100th anniversary of the death of one of the greatest cornet players in banding history.

Edwin Firth was born at Skipton on 23rd December 1888. His grandfather, Greenwood Firth had been solo trombone with Black Dyke for twenty-five years, while his father, Squire Firth had also been a cornet player in the Queensbury band.

Principal cornet

Not surprisingly, Edwin learned to play the cornet and in 1899 joined the Skipton Band quickly becoming principal cornet and playing with them at the 1902 Crystal Palace Challenge Shield contest, conducted by his father.

Renowned as something of a 'boy prodigy', he received many invitations to appear as a guest soloist with bands — using the money earned to further his talents under the tuition of William Rimmer and Alexander Owen.

He became principal cornet of Foden's Band aged 19 in 1908, helping them to victories at the British Open in 1909, 1910, 1912, 1913 and 1915, as well as the National title in 1910. He was also a talented composer and in 1913 his march 'Westward Ho!' won a prize in a competition ran by the British Bandsman weekly newspaper.

Killed in action

In 1917 he joined the 28th London Regiment (The Artists' Rifles) as a Private, and when posted to France took an old cornet with him on which to practice. Tragically, he was killed in action on 1st June 1918, aged 29, leaving a widow Doris (who died in 1991 and who never remarried) and a son, Edwin Jnr who died aged 75 in 1994.

Although Edwin's body was buried in the Varennes Military Cemetery, his name was added to the gravestone of his sister, found in a cemetery in the village of Earby, along with a decorative inscription of a cornet (above) as well as two War Memorials.

To mark the centenary of his death, Foden's will hold celebration concerts on the 1st and 3rd June in Sandbach.

As part of a successful Arts Council England application Foden's have commissioned Composer in Residence, Andy Scott to write a work to commemorate his life4BR

Celebratory work

As part of a successful Arts Council England application Foden's have commissioned Composer in Residence, Andy Scott to write a work to commemorate his life, and which will be premiered at these events.

As well as the concerts there will also be an exhibition of Edwin's possessions (including his cornet)

Ticket numbers are restricted and available via: www.priorbooking.com or marklwilky@hotmail.com

Further reading

In 2004, Allan Littlemore wrote the following article on Firth for 4BR:
http://www.4barsrest.com/articles/2004/art414.asp#.Wj6hz1Vl_X4

Become a supporter and help make our future secure.

4barsrest continues to be a proudly independent voice. There are no paywalls to overcome to be able to enjoy what we do to keep our journalism at the heart of the brass banding world. Support us with a one-off donation or subscribe from just £2.50 per month.

Support us    


National

New leadership roles at National Youth Bands of Great Britain

August 13 • Dr Robert Childs steps down as Chairperson of the National Youth & National Childrens Brass Bands of Great Britain to welcome in new faces to lead the organisation into the future.


wobplay

World of Brass to launch new streaming service

August 12 • World of Brass is to launch wobplay — a new subscription streaming service offering over 8,500 audio tracks and videos old and new for brass band lovers across the globe.


Tredegar Band

Tredegar euph star reaches Jeju final

August 12 • Yu-Han Yang, the solo euphonium of Welsh champion, Tredegar, has reached the final of the prestigious Jeju International Brass Competition in Korea.


aNGEL

Last chord looms for Durham composer competition

August 12 • You need to be pronto to get your entries on for the Durham & Open Composition Competition.


Black Dyke Band - Swiss Nationals Gala Concert

Saturday 19 September • KKL, Europaplatz 1, 6005 Luzern, Switzerland 6000


The Marple Band - Marple Band Autumn Concert

Friday 16 October • Marple Methodist Church, Church Lane, Marple SK6 6AY


The Marple Band - Marple and Hawk Green Bands Concert Compstall

Saturday 7 November • St Pauls Church, Compstall Rd, Compstall, Stockport, Cheshire SK6 5HU


Contest: Swiss National Championships

Saturday 28 November • Stravinski Hall, Montreaux. Claude-Nobs 5, 1820 Montreaux, Switzerland 1820


Contest: Swiss National Championships

Sunday 29 November • Stravinski Hall, Montreaux. Claude-Nobs 5, 1820 Montreaux, Switzerland 1820


Newbridge Band

August 12 • Newbridge celynen brass band 4th sectiob are recruiting *Cornets * Flugel Horn *Horns * Baritone and Bb and Eb Bass . . We are planning to rebuild over the next 12 months with Concerts and 3 contests


Chadderton Band

August 11 • Chadderton Band is a non-contesting band playing at various events throughout the year. We are a friendly band looking for players of all ages and abilities on all sections + EUPH and percussion. Most welcome to come along to one of our rehearsals.


Amesbury Town Band

August 5 • Players and beginners of any standard are always warmly welcomed especially some more solo cornets and a spare percussionists to help out existing players. Feel free to drop in even if you just fancy a blow or want to try another instrument. After Covid!


Ian Porthouse


Cornet soloist, clinician, conductor and adjudicator


               

 © 2020 4barsrest.com Ltd