Young brass musicians could soon be playing in far flung parts as a Northamptonshire-based award-winning brass band takes to the road for concerts at home and abroad.
Youth Brass 2000, Premier Section National Youth Champion Brass Band of Great Britain for the past seven years, is on the lookout for players to join their group.
Welcoming brass players of all abilities, up the the age of 19, the Chairman of Youth Brass 2000, Don Collins, is eager to recruit more teenagers for their trip to Italy later this year and to Sweden in 2023.
He said: “You might imagine that the waiting list to join Youth Brass 2000 would be very, very long but you would be very, very wrong. Like most brass bands at the moment, recruitment is challenging.
“Because of the band’s totally independent status, there are no natural feeder channels into the band - no senior band connections, no music hub connections, no school or natural community links, plus being in the East Midlands, we`re not exactly in the middle of brass banding territory.”
Mr Collins thinks that the band’s success might be off-putting.
He said:” Maybe young players are deterred by the band’s amazingly high profile and national and international successes and presume the entry standards are incredibly difficult.
"We have no entry requirements at all, just full commitment. To be fair, we have managed to attract many young brass players from far and wide.
"Who wouldn’t enjoy the fabulous concerts we play plus all the major contests we participate in? We are currently National Youth Champions, The Brass in Concert Youth Champions, The British Open Youth Champions, 4 Bars Rest Youth Band of the Year and Butlins Premier Section Youth Champions.”
Any new members could look forward to an annual tour, this year to Lake Garda in Italy, and would be able to represent England in the Premier Section of the European Youth Championships in Malmo, Sweden in May 2023.
The group are keen to point out they are set up with a safeguarding and a team of registered licensed chaperones.
Mr Collins said: “For reassurance to any parents of prospective new members, the band is a fully constituted registered charity with a fully elected non-paid committee. We are all DBS checked, plus we have five registered licensed chaperones and the full complement of a fully-trained safeguarding team.
“Financially, we don’t receive any Arts Council or any other external funding. We have no major sponsor but we do try very hard to keep costs down so being part of Youth Brass 2000 won’t break the bank.
“It`s been a difficult couple of years for everyone, but we at YB2K are really working hard to keep this part of our British heritage alive and kicking.”
Formed in 1989 from the embers of the Rigid Containers Youth Band founding leader Eddie Pain, set out to form the ‘best youth band in the world’.
The band rehearse at Wilbarston Village Hall. To find out more about the band call 07860 525352 or email [email protected]