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Band's Solo & Ensemble Competition

Saturday 31st January 2016

Campbeltown Brass held its annual Solo and Ensemble Contest on Saturday 31st January, with 30 soloists and 4 ensembles competed in 5 classes.  It was a real triumph for the boys as Owen Pickering, Andrew McMillan and Kyle Paterson won the Open, Intermediate and Junior Sections with Kirsten Souter, Erin McLellan and Rona Campbell earning well deserved runners up prizes.  Special mention must be made of the Beginners Solo competition, with 14 very young players giving their first ever public performance after just a few months lessons to a packed audience.  

The Adjudicator was Mr Scott Kerr, principal Euphonium of the Whitburn Band, who also gave an excellent recital and offered lots of advice as well as praise and encouragement to the Campbeltown youngsters.  

Musical Director Gordon Evans chaired the event and gave a moving tribute to Jenny Ralston, Lynsey Wardrop, Emma Paterson, Jimmy Taylor, Robert McNair and Barbara MacTaggart, all former band members who are remembered for this occasion.



Beginners Solo
Emily Bennie - Winner
Grace McTaggart - Runner-up

Junior Solo
Kyle Paterson - Winner
Rona Campbell - Runner-up

Intermediate Solo
Andrew McMillan - Winner
Erin McLellan - Runner-up

Open Solo
Owen Pickering - Winner
Kirsten Souter - Runner-up

Campbeltown Brass A - Winner
Campbeltown Junior A - Runner-up

Besson Solo & Ensemble Championships

Saturday 6th February 2016

Campbeltown Brass Band’s recent run of success continued last week at the 2016 Besson Scottish Solo and Ensemble Championships, with 3 Scottish Championships titles, 7 Gold, 1 Silver and 1 Bronze award and 2 brand new Besson cornets!

In the Junior Section, 12 year old tenor horn player Andrew McMillan became the new Scottish Solo Champion, with a tremendous performance of ‘La Belle Americaine’, earning deserved praise from Adjudicators David Childs and Davur Magnussen and the many brass band personalities who had the pleasure of listening to him.  In second place was Erin McLellan, in fourth was Kyle Paterson, both earned Gold awards.

Andrew had further success when joined by Drew Cunningham, Caius Walker, Kyle Paterson and Scott Oman.  Their performance of 'Northumbrian Folk Song Suite' won them The Scottish Junior Ensemble Competition.  Also competing and for the first time at the National finals, the very young group of Hannah McCaig, Rona Campbell, Jack Campbell, Andrew Colville and Jamie Colville earned a Bronze Award.

The real bonus came later in the day when in the Intermediate Ensemble section, the Brass Quartet of Kirsten Souter, Emma Bannatyne, Lucy Kerr and Owen Pickering clinched a third Scottish title for the Band with an amazing performance of 'Bohemian Rhapsody'.  Just behind them earning a Silver Award was the quartet of Hannah Oman, Rebecca Semple, Suen Yee Walker and Andrew McMillan deputising for an ailing Amy Paterson.

As if that was not enough, band members Owen Pickering and Gavin Johnson both earned Gold Awards in the Intermediate Solo section.

Conducting all four groups was Musical Director Gordon Evans, who still in euphoric mood said “In over fifty years of banding, I had never enjoyed a day quite like it”!

Scottish Championships

Saturday 12th March 2016

It was an exhilarating and celebratory weekend for Campbeltown Brass, returning home as the new Scottish Champions in the Third Section.  Competing against 8 other bands, the Senior band, with a few players you can hardly see above the music stands, played with maturity and confidence. Campbeltown Brass lifted the trophy to win the Scottish Third Section Championship and an invitation to represent Scotland at the British Championships held in September.

To put the icing on the cake Murray Ralston won the award for the Best Instrumentalist.  Whilst the band had travelled up the night before, Murray had been milking cows very early Saturday morning before making the 170 odd miles journey to get on stage and contribute in one of the Band’s greatest ever achievements!

Adjudicator John Miller and Kevin Wadsworth praised the Band for its musical performance and control from Musical Director Gordon Evans, who praised what he said was a real team effort but singled out Principal Cornet player Kirsten Souter whose leadership and assured playing has once more lifted the Band where it counts – on stage!  He also wished to thank Charlie Farren from Whitburn who has led two very inspirational training weekends. Congratulations to all! 


NYBBS Easter Course

Six members of Campbeltown Brass spent part of their Easter holidays on a course run by the Scottish Brass Band Association on behalf of the National Youth Brass Band of Scotland (NYBBS).

Playing in the Senior NYBBS were trombonists Lucy Kerr, Owen Pickering and tuba player Gavin Johnson, working under the likes of Richard Evans, Russell Gray and John Wallace.  Their main task was to record a CD of the music of Malcolm Arnold, a project whose release is planned to coincide with the Senior NYBBS’ forthcoming tour to Norway.

Teaming up with the Reserve Band was principal cornet Kirsten Souter, Amy Paterson on solo horn and the Band’s soloist soprano cornet player Hannah Oman, who delighted the audience at the Band’s open rehearsal which was conducted by John Boax and Gordon Evans.


Pancake Tea

23rd April 2016

Over 55 musicians took part, the vast majority still at school and presented a wide range of music from Rogers and Hammerstein to The Proclaimers and old classics like Death or Glory from Brassed Off and the ageless overture The Caliph of Baghdad.  Top of the bill was the Band’s two featured soloists, soprano cornet star Hannah Oman, rapidly making a name for herself nationally and the current Scottish Junior Solo Champion Andrew McMillan, whose performance of Capriccio by Philip Sparke left the audience and fellow Band members stunned by its brilliance.

Musical Director Gordon Evans said it was a great morning and thanked all the workers behind the scenes, commenting on the team work that keeps the band going, and hopefully on to the future British Championships in Cheltenham in September and is confident of a successful outcome to all the fundraising needed to attend this event. 

Kintyre Music Festival

June 2016

Members of the band have been busy during the past few weeks, playing at the Heritage Centre Gun Ceremony, the MOK Run, the 150th Anniversary of the Carradale Church, the Conventicle Service at Southend and participated in the Kintyre Music Festival with Band members winning a large number of trophies.


Section R Brass (Primary Schools)
Class 68 Elementary (less than one year's experience)
1st - Christina McTaggart
2nd - Mia MacLaren
3rd - Emily Bennie

Section R Brass (Primary Schools)
Class 69 Open
1st - Kyle Paterson
2nd - Drew Cunningham
3rd - Rona Campbell

Section T Brass (Secondary School Age)
Class 70 Junior (Secondary 1)
1st - Andrew McMillan

Class 71 Intermediate (Secondary 2 and 3)
1st - Amy Paterson 
2nd - Hannah Oman

Class 72 Senior (Secondary 4, 5 and 6)
1st - Owen Pickering 
2nd - Lucy Kerr 
3rd - Kirsten Souter

Section V Instrumental Ensemble (Secondary School Age)
Class 78 Instrumental Duet (Accompanied)
1st - Amy Paterson and Andrew McMillan

Class 77 Instrumental Duet (Unaccompanied)
2nd - Hannah Oman and Rebecca Semple

Class 79 Instrumental Ensemble (Unaccompanied)
1st - Campbeltown Brass A 
2nd - Campbeltown Brass B

Summer Concert

22nd June 2016

Campbeltown Brass enjoyed two fundraising events raising over £1,000 towards the Senior Band’s trip to the British Championship at Cheltenham in September.  A packed Community Centre enjoyed a summer concert featuring the Beginners, Junior and Senior bands, performing a wide range of music conducted by Gordon Evans and Katrina Barr.


NYBBS Summer Course 

24th - 29th August 2016


Campbeltown Brass was well represented at this year's National Youth Brass Band of Scotland Summer course in Strathallan, with 9 members spread over the 3 bands. Congratulations to Amy Paterson and Andrew McMillan who won the solo competition in the Reserve Band and Children's Band respectively. The course ended with a very successful concert at St John's Kirk, Perth.



Training Week

2nd - 4th August 2016

Over the course of 3 days, new beginners, old beginners and Junior band members came together for a very successful training week, held in the Band's new band room.  To finish off the week, the Junior Band will be performing at the Agriculture Show on Friday. Our thanks to Paul Judge, who delivered engaging and fun-packed percussion sessions for our youngsters and the Senior band members who helped out this week.  


Training Weekend with Russell Gray

12th - 14th August 2016


Campbeltown Brass was delighted to welcome the return of conductor and soloist Russell Gray to the wee toon.  From the Beginners and Juniors to the Senior Band, Russell spent the weekend working with band members who have only been playing for a few weeks to those who have been playing for a lifetime!  Such is his experience and knowledge, that he was able to bring out the best from both and instilled in the youngsters - enthusiasm and confidence and the more seasoned players – insights and refinement.

The highlight of the weekend was the concert, which saw a huge crowd packed into the newly refurbished Town Hall.  Accompanied by the Senior Band, Russell mesmerised the crowd with his awe-inspiring performances of Zelda, Post Horn Gallop and Buglers Holiday.  However, it was his performance of Share My Yoke that held the audience spellbound.  


Concert at Dunaverty Hall

8th September 2016


A wonderful evening of music!  Thank you to the Hall Committee for all of their work and to all the performers. 

We also would like to say a huge thank you to all the people and organistations that have supported the band in our fundraising push for Cheltenham, the help has been amazing. 


National Brass Band Championships

18th September 2016


A valiant effort by the band, competing against some of the best brass bands in Britain.  Despite the epic journey, the band gave a praiseworthy and rousing performance.



West of Scotland Solo Ensemble Contest

29th October 2016



Junior Solo
Andrew McMillan - 1st, Gold
Kyle Paterson - 2nd, Gold
Andrew Colville - 3rd, Gold
Drew Cunningham - Silver
Hannah McCaig - Silver
Jack Campbell - Silver
Rona Campbell - Silver
Scott Oman - Silver

Junior Ensemble
Campbeltown Brass Junior A - 1st, Gold (Andrew McMillan, Caius Walker, Drew Cunningham, Kyle Paterson & Scott Oman)
Argyll Brass Roots A - 2nd, Silver
Campbeltown Brass Junior B - 3rd, Silver
(Hannah McCaig, Jack Campbell, Rona Campbell & Andrew Colville)

Intermediate Solo
Amy Paterson - 1st Gold
Gavin Johnson - 2nd, Gold
Hannah Oman - 4th, Gold

Intermediate Ensemble
Campbeltown Brass Intermediate - 1st, Gold
(Amy Paterson, Hannah Oman, Rebecca Semple & Suen Yee Walker)

Youth Solo 
Owen Pickering - 3rd

Youth Ensemble 
Dalmelington Brass Quartet - 1st 
Campbeltown Brass - 2nd
(Owen Pickering, Kirsten Souter, Lucy Kerr & Gavin Johnson)


Band Supplies Scottish Challenge

19th November 2016 


The Senior Band competed at the Scottish Open Challenge Contest in Kilmarnock’s Grand Hall.  Against 23 bands graded from Sections 1 to 4, they were placed the highest Scottish Third Section Band.  The points earned from this, added to the success of earlier in the year, meant that Campbeltown Brass ended 2016 as the Third Section Scottish Brass Band of the Year!



Scottish Youth Championships

26th November 2016


Champions again and Campbeltown Brass’ fantastic year of competition ended at Perth Concert Hall on Saturday, when both the Under 12’s band conducted by Katrina Barr and the Under 14’s band conducted by Gordon Evans were crowned Scottish Champions in the Preparatory and the Novice Section. Playing against much older players from bands all over Scotland, the Campbeltown youngsters convincingly took home the trophy in both competitions and the icing on the cake came when a debut performance from the newly formed Beginners Band was awarded a Silver Certificate.  


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