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The National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain Summer Series

Written by The National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain on June 29, 2023

The Children’s and Youth Bands of The NYBBGB will soon be taking their week long residencies followed by Summer concerts.This year, both residential courses will be at Wymondham College in Norfolk, the Children’s Band starting on 23rd July and the Youth Band on 29th July. Amongst the tutoring and social opportunities provided, the residential courses will see both bands able to engage with The NYBBGB’S new partner organisations – British Army Music and The Wildlife Trusts charity.

Lt Col David Berringer MBE (Commanding Officer of The Bands of the Household Division and BAM’s Principal Director of Music) who played a key role in the State Funeral of the late Queen Elizabeth II, the Coronation of King Charles III and the most recent Trooping of the Colour parade, will join the jury of the Mortimer competition. The Wildlife Trusts Arran Wilson (Youth Activism Manager) and Dom Higgins (Head of Health and Education) will coordinate a series of activities to engage the children and young people from the bands  in some of the issues facing the natural world. Members will also have the opportunity to learn more about the NYBBGB’s Brass Building Blocks programme of tutorials and hear from the ABRSM on the new brass syllabus which was launched at the end of 2022.

The Children’s Band will be lead by Guest Conductor Mareika Gray and the Guest Soloist will be percussionist Simone Rebello.

Mareika Gray is the Artistic Director and Professional Musical Director of the Ratby Cooperative Band Organisation and Musical Director of the Eccles Brass Band. She is among the leading brass band conductors, with her inspiring concert programs and her unique interpretations of major brass band works, and continues to appear at major concert halls including Symphony Hall Birmingham, the Royal Albert Hall in London, and the Grieg Hall in Bergen. She has also made several appearances at the Australian, Danish, Norwegian and British National Championships gaining podium finishes at each contest

Simone Rebello’s career has seen her recording, touring, and broadcasting nationally and internationally, and winning a collection of awards and prizes including Cosmopolitan Woman of the Year in the Performing Arts.She works frequently as a concerto soloist with wind orchestras and brass bands around the world and as a solo recitalist. In addition to her successful performing career, Simone was appointed as Director of Percussion at The Royal Northern College of Music in 2010 and became Head of School of Wind, Brass and Percussion in 2022.

The work with Mareika and Simone during the week long residential course will culminate in a concert for the Children’s Band at The Halls in Norwich on 28th July. The programme for the evening is themed around ‘Rhythm’ and will feature the world premier of young Belgium composer Lennert Van Laenen’s new work ‘Sparkle’.  It was this piece that Lennert entered into the NYBBGB’s 2022 Young Composer Competition and for which he claimed the runner up spot.
This year, the Youth Band residential will be under the direction of Guest Conductor Sarah Ioannides, and featuring Guest Soloist, trombonist Scott Hartmann.

Sarah Ioannides, is Music Director of Symphony Tacoma, and is recognised as one of the most inspiring and creative conductors today, performing internationally and working as a coach and mentor for many young musicians and conductors. She is Artistic Director of Cascade Conducting and Composing, and coaches for The Curtis Institute of Music’s Mentor Network. Sarah also appears as a guest conductor with orchestras such as the Tonkünstler, Orchestre Nationale de Lyon, Seattle Symphony (Untitled Series), Calgary Philharmonic and Philadelphia Chamber Orchestra.

‍Scott Hartmann is our Guest Soloist. He is Professor of Trombone at Yale University and has taught and played in concerts in all 50 U.S states, as well as being Principal Trombone of the Brass Band of Battle Creek for 30 years. An accomplished musician and educator, Scott has taught and played concerts in all 50 U.S. states and throughout the world as a trombone soloist and with various chamber groups. He is a longtime member of the Summit Brass, and has been principal trombone of the Brass Band of Battle Creek since 1993. The Youth Band will be taking their experience of working alongside Sarah and Scott into their concert on Saturday 5th August at Saffron Hall in Saffron Walden, the for which will be ‘Music from Around the World’.

The concert will feature two brand new commissions taken from entries into The NYBBGB’s 2022 Young Composer Competition. The first will be ‘Open World’ from Jack Yagerline, a highly commended entry, and then the overall winning piece ‘Dieu Et Mon Droit’ by Daniel Hall.

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