Saturday, 18 February 2017

"Check out" how much we raised!

Colin Giles (L) with Mark Gibson (R), AAURC

Colin Giles (L) with Ivan Brown (R), Bethany Homestead
Following our fantastic Christmas concert, Northampton Concert Band raised a total of £900 to be shared between Abington Avenue United Reformed Church and Bethany Homestead.

Our chairperson, Colin Giles, was delighted to hand over two, unreasonably oversized, cheques for £450 to representatives from both organisations during our rehearsal last week. (Good luck to the person who has to post those over the bank counter)

The Christmas concert was performed in honour of Harold Colman, former conductor of the band, who was fondly remembered at the fundraising event. Harold resided at Bethany Homestead, with his wife Cathy, in his later years and was a regular attendee at church services at Abington Avenue United Reformed Church.

Northampton Concert Band's next concert will be in aid of  Marie Curie on Saturday, 25th March 2017 , 7:30pm at Church of the Holy Sepulchre where we will be performing music composed by masters of British wind band music in a concert entitled "Spring Serenade", conducted by Graham Tear.
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Friday, 25 November 2016

Christmas Concert 2016 - Full Programme

Programme Overview

Barnard Castle 
Dance of the Tumblers 
A Lincolnshire Posy 
Elegy on a RAF theme 
Lucy Long 
John Williams Swings 


Let the Bells Ring 
Once in Royal David’s City 
Hark! The Herald 
A Christmas Overture 
The Christmas Song
Northampton Concert Band presents their annual Christmas Concert conducted by Graham Tear.

10th December 2016 @ 7:30pm
Abington Avenue United Reformed Church, Northampton, NN1 4QA


Barnard Castle
Goff Richards
Goff Richards, sometimes credited as Godfrey Richards, was a prominent English brass band arranger and composer. He was well known for his original brass compositions such as “Trailblaze”, “Doyen”, “Exploding Brass!” and the marches “The Jaguar” and “Barnard Castle”. He died on 25 June 2011 in Cheshire, following an illness, at the age of 66. Barnard Castle is a market town in Teesdale, County Durham, England. It is named after the castle around which it grew up.

Dance of the Tumblers
Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov
arr. Terry Vosvein
Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov (b. March 18th, 1844, d. June 21st, 1908) is known for his lavish pieces such as Scheherazade and Capriccio Espagnol, and his many operas.
“Dance of the Tumblers” is taken from the opera The Snow Maiden, a fairytale, which premiered in 1882. It features in a scene when the Tsar hosts a feast in celebration of the coming of spring following the tragic death of the Snow Maiden after a 15 year reign.

A Lincolnshire Posy
Percy Grainger
  • Dublin Bay (1)
  • Horkstow Grange (2)
  • The Lost Lady found (6)
We present 3 movements from A Lincolnshire Posy

A Lincolnshire Posy was written by Percy Grainger in 1937 for the American Bandmasters Association.It is considered to be Grainger’s masterpiece. The work consists of six movements each based on folk songs that Grainger heard whilst on travels in Lincolnshire in 1905.
Grainger wrote: "Each number is intended to be a kind of musical portrait of the singer who sang its underlying melody... a musical portrait of the singer's personality no less than of his habits of song, his regular or irregular wonts of rhythm, his preference for gaunt or ornately arabesque delivery, his contrasts of legato and staccato, his tendency towards breadth or delicacy of tone."
Grainger dedicated his "bunch of Wildflowers" to "the old folksingers who sang so sweetly to me."

Elegy on the Royal Air Force March Past
Barrie Hingley
The original score for the Royal Air Force March Past was completed by Sir Walford Davis in 1918. The second part of the march, the trio, was composed by Sir George Dyson. It is this trio section that Wing Commander Barrie Hingley OBE used as inspiration for this reflective Elegy. Hingley is a former Principal Director of Music at the Royal Air Force and one of the service's most prolific composers.

Lucy Long
Fred Godfrey
Bassoon solo - Will Gold
Adolphus Frederick (Fred) Godfrey trained at the Royal Academy of Music in London, taking over as Bandmaster of the Coldstream Guards after his father’s death. His compositions include the Marguerite Waltzes, a piccolo solo Yankee Doodle, and Recollections of England which featured in the early London Promenade concerts.
Lucy Long was premiered in Blackpool, written for and played by the orchestra’s seventeen-year-old bassoonist Philip Langdale. The work also featured in the very first London Promenade concert conducted by Henry J Wood at the Queen’s Hall on Saturday 10 August 1895.

Nigel Hess
Commissioned by the Royal Air Force, 'Scramble!' is a concert overture for symphonic wind band inspired by images of the RAF's airfields during the Battle of Britain, immortalised for ever in such films as Reach for the Skies.
The pastoral opening depicts the lull before the storm: the young pilots sitting in wicker chairs outside their barracks on a sunlit morning. The peace is, of course, deceptive; suddenly amid siren sounds, there is a shout of 'Scramble!', and a rush to the waiting planes. In no time at all the Squadron is airborne, heading for a skirmish over the English Channel and beyond. A lyrical central section featuring a solo cornet depicts the stillness many pilots described as they flew to engage with the enemy before the battle breaks out once more. For those who returned, it would be only a short while before, once again, they would hear the familiar shout of 'Scramble!'

John Williams Swings
arr. Jay Bocook
Film scoring master John Williams has written music for a variety of genres and style, and this entertaining and powerful medley showcases his jazz roots. This selection includes “Cantina Band” from Star Wars, the main theme from Catch Me If You Can, and the rousing “Swing, Swing, Swing” from the movie 1941.


L.O.L. - Listen to LOL
Robert Buckley
Robert (Bob) Buckley was born in Brighton, England – he now divides his time between Vancouver, Montreal, and Holland. He has a diverse career as a composer, arranger, performer, producer, recording artist and conductor. LOL (Laugh Out Loud) is a bonkers, cartoony piece of music guaranteed to wake you up after the interval. It was written for the Naden Band of the Royal Canadian Navy in celebration of their 75th anniversary as an opportunity to display their dazzling technical facility and humour.

Let the Bells Ring - Listen to Let the Bells Ring
Robert Buckley
Based on the familiar Ukrainian Bell Carol, Robert Buckley has taken a rhapsodic approach mixing original ideas along with this well-known melody. Originally composed by Mykola Dmytrovich Leontovych, the Ukrainian Bell Carol is part of a large choral work entitled Shchedryk. It was first performed by students of Kiev University in December 1916. The tune is an adaptation of an old ‘shchedrivka’, a song traditionally sung on Ukrainian New Year’s Eve, Leontovych added his own lyrics which concern the legend claiming that when Jesus was born, all the bells on earth started ringing in his honour.

Audience Carol: Once in Royal David’s City

Eric Whitacre
Originally written for 8 voices, Whitacre’s Sleep is a setting of the 1923 Robert Frost poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening”. Though Whitacre was denied using Frost’s text as his estate maintains very strict controls on musical settings of his works.

Audience Carol: Hark! The Herald

A Christmas Overture
Nigel Hess
This vivacious and colourful Christmas Overture, originally commissioned as an orchestral work by John Rutter for his 2007 Christmas Festival, proved an instant success with audience and orchestra alike. Traditional carols, skilfully juxtaposed and interwoven, provide the thematic material. They are, in order of appearance, Ding Dong! Merrily On High; Deck The Halls, Il Est Né Le Divin Enfant, Infant Holy, Infant Lowly, Personent Hodie, We Wish You A Merry Christmas and Angels, From the Realms Of Glory, which brings the overture to a majestic close.

The Christmas Song
Mel Tormé & Robert Wells
According to Tormé, the song was written during a blistering hot summer in 1945. In an effort to "stay cool by thinking cool". I saw a spiral pad on Wells' piano with four lines written in pencil", Tormé recalled. "They started, 'Chestnuts roasting..., Jack Frost nipping..., Yuletide carols..., Folks dressed up like Eskimos.' Bob didn't think he was writing a song lyric. He said he thought if he could immerse himself in winter he could cool off. Forty minutes later that song was written. I wrote all the music and some of the lyrics."

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Monday, 31 October 2016

Christmas Concert

Northampton Concert Band return to Abington Avenue United Reformed Church for their Christmas Concert following a sell-out concert last year

Please join us as we celebrate the festive season and fondly remember Harold Colman, who for over 50 years was our musical director and conductor.
In Harold’s memory, we will be donating all profits from the concert to Abington Avenue United Reformed Church and Bethany Homestead, who provide residential care in a quiet but central area of Northampton.

To purchase your tickets call Rachel on 07561 390099 or visit

£10 Adults, £5 Children/Students
Saturday 10th December, 7.30pm, Abington Avenue United Reformed Church

Concert programme details to follow.
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Thursday, 21 July 2016

Brixworth Music Festival 2016
Northampton Concert Band return this year as the opening act for the Brixworth Music Festival 2016.

Performing for the second time at the festival, Northampton Concert Band will kick off the proceedings with a rousing concert featuring music from some of the best British composers with their programme entitled 'Best of British'.

The 50+ strong band first performed at the festival in 2015 and has been going from strength to strength with Graham Tear as their musical director who took the baton in April 2015, building their members, expanding the repertoire and having a sold out Christmas concert at the end of the year.

This Best of British concert includes an great selection of music from Elgar to Adele with some well known favourites as well as some less known items from prominent British composers; including English Dances (Set 1) by Northampton's Sir Malcolm Arnold (The Bridge on the River Kwai) and the rousing March: Barnes Wallis by Nigel Hess (Ladies in Lavender) which was commissioned by Royal Air Force Music Services to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the famous Dambuster’s raid.

Now in it's 3rd year the Brixworth Music Festival celebrates local musicians from within the village
as well as from surrounding areas and special guests. It runs from 16th - 25th September and features 11 different ensembles and soloists all performing in All Saints' Church.

"Best of British" will be held on Friday 7:30pm 16th September 2016 at All Staints' Church, Station Road, Brixworth, Northampton.
Parking is available at the church.

For more information about the festival visit the Brinxworth Music Festival website.

For tickets for this performance visit:

Full Concert Program: Best of British
  • March: Barnes Wallis - Nigel Hess 
  • English Dances - Malcolm Arnold 
  • Skyfall - Adele and Paul Epworth 
  • Resurgam - Eric Ball
  • Queen in Concert - Mercury
  • Calling All Workers -Eric Coates 
  • English Folksong Suite - Ralph Vaughan-Williams 
  • Flower Duet from “Lakme” - Delibes 
  • Fantasia on British Sea Songs - Henry Wood 
  • Pomp and Circumstance March No 1 - Edward Elgar 
  • Jerusalem - Parry 
  • Evening Hymn and Sunset - Rob Wiffin
(program subject to change)
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Thursday, 26 May 2016

Abington Park Bandstand playlist - 29th May 2016

Here is a list of some of the music we have for our performance at Abington Park bandstand, Northampton, on Sunday 29th May. I'm sure you will agree; there is something for everyone there.
The band will be performing between 2 - 5 pm with a 20 minute break halfway through..

Carmina Burana
Ballet Egyptian
Belle of the Ball
The Big Country
Bugler’s Holiday
An Ellington Festival - selection
Emmerdale - theme
French Military March
Frozen - selection
Evening Hymn and Sunset
French Horns Country Style
The Incredibles
The Jungle Book - selection
Little Suite no.2 - Gallop
Mamma Mia! - selection
The Padstow Lifeboat
Pomp and Circumstance (Land of Hope and Glory)
Queen in Concert - selection
Soul Bossa Nova
Wicked! - selection

This event is hosted by Northampton Borough Council
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