Published on February 28th, 2019 by gavin

Artistic Development Programme Praised by AoBBA

The Association of Brass Band Adjudicators (AoBBA) have expressed praise for the recent initiative by Brass Bands England (BBE) for their Artistic Development Programme for bands and conductors. Led by Philip Harper (an AoBBA member) there has been a great deal of interest from the brass band community.

Mark Wilkinson told A4B: “Philip’s mastery of baton and rehearsal technique is recognised world-wide, and at AoBBA we are pleased that BBE has developed this initiative”.

The association is always ready to support any initiative that enables and develops the skills of conductors and, in addition, raises awareness of the fundamentals of band training and artistic expression.

David Hirst told A4B: “When our members are in ‘the box’ adjudicators are often met with performances that lack the fundamentals of band training which inhibits the added value of musical expression and this scheme is one that AoBBA fully support”.

Philip Harper told us: “I was very pleased when BBE asked me to take the lead role in delivering its Artistic Direction strand of band development across the country. The resulting day’s workshop covers subjects such as ‘What is Art?’; concert planning; collaboration; marketing; and conducting. For the latter part we are joined by a different band in each region so I can demonstrate certain techniques and approaches in a real hands-on manner. The response to the days I has so far delivered has been universally positive, and I hope will prove inspirational to local artistic leaders who will be able to develop their own skills in these areas to benefit a wide cross-section of the banding community.”

Chair of Brass Bands England, Mike Kilroy, added: “BBE is committed to improving standards in all areas of our culture, but for brass bands to remain vibrant and relevant to society in the years ahead it is vital that we project the very best of what we can do whenever possible. By stimulating bands’ thought processes, their entire approach to music-making and how they project their image can be transformed, and there is no one better than Philip Harper to lead this positive change. We are delighted at the overwhelmingly positive response to the sessions so far, but further dates are planned around the country, including at Ushaw College in Durham on Sunday 24 March. See the new BBE website at for further details.”

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