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We're off to the National Finals!

Updated: Jul 21, 2020

What a great start to our 180th anniversary year. On Sunday the band competed in the North West Regional Championships at the Winter Garden's Blackpool. Playing the test piece Legacy by Tom Davoren the band played superbly under the trusty baton of our MD Daniel Thomas. Live reports throughout the day from 4BR and All4Brass really enjoyed our performance as did the adjudicators Andrew Warriner and Andrea Price.


Band #9 – Blackburn & Darwen

Nice opening, if a little quicker than some bands today so far. Good balance in the full band playing. All the detail can be heard in the faster playing. The music has a good flow to it. The quiet playing is clean and again the detail is clear.

The opening to the 2nd movement is a little fragile but settles quickly. The cornet solo quickly settles, this is good. The band are responding well to the conductor as he moves the music. Good balance and intonation. Sop does well. Euph/Horn line is nice and delicate and the underlying band is sympathetic to the melody. Sop fanfare is good! The full band is a perhaps a little understated here however. Bold Euph to close.

The final movement starts well. Detail is clear, even from the basses! Nice momentum to the music. Feels secure. Balance is good and the melody has time. Everything is in it’s place, with a good energy. The conductor is driving the music forward. The ending is solid, if not slightly understated.

Overall – A good performance from Blackburn & Darwen. The fundamentals were there and the band were allowed to play the music. One to watch this, it could most definitely be up there!


Blackburn and Darwen provide food for thought with a well structured account that had vibrancy as well as thoughtfulness to the colours and balances. Not many have done that today.

Nervously awaiting the results in the Opera House, B&D members dressed smartly in their new jackets were delighted to be placed 2nd and qualify for the National Finals to represent the North West in Cheltenham in September.

Results 4BR

1. Roberts Bakery (Paul Lovatt-Cooper)* 2. Blackburn & Darwen (Daniel Thomas)* 3. Ashton-Under-Lyne (Jamie Prophet) 4. Eccles Borough (Mareika Gray) 5. Flixton (Matthew Ryan) 6. Manx Concert Brass (Ian Clague MBE) 7. Freckleton (Matt Shaw) 8. Longridge (Mark Peacock) 9. Mossley (Duncan Byers) 10. Middleton (Kevin Gibbs) 11. Bollington Brass (Peter Christian) 12. Haydock (Mark Quinn) 13. Silk Brass (Tony Wyatt) 14. Marple (Stephen Curtis) 15. Diggle (Alan Widdop) 16. Haslingden & Helmshore (John Binns)

*Qualify for National Final

Our delighted MD Daniel updated his Facebook page with the following message.

When people believe in you, it’s a wonderful feeling. When their belief in you pays off... I can’t put that feeling into words.

To lead MY band back into the championship section and to do it by 4 clear points is a dream.

Many people conduct. Not many get to conduct their hometown band. I am so lucky to give back to them, what they gave to me.

This one’s for you Dad x

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