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Old and current band members playing at the bands 20th Anniversary concert

About the Band

 

Moray Concert Brass was formed by Glenn M Munro in 1992 from the Moray Music Centre senior brass band which, as with other music centre groups only rehearsed from August to March with performances at Christmas and Easter. Seeing the potential of the group, Glenn gained permission to continue the group into the summer term and MCB was born.

 

With two summer courses at Earnhill House under their belt, the idea for MCB’s first ever European concert tour reared its head. Plans were quickly put into action and in 1995 MCB left Elgin for their first trip on a P&O ferry from Hull to Zeebrugge with the destination of Paris and the promise of 3 concerts to new audiences in their minds.

It was at this point that Friends of Moray Concert Brass was formed with the remit of fundraising for tours and to help with promoting and running concerts.

 

Following this very successful tour MCB has continued to tour to various venues throughout Europe with the following tours; Germany 1997, France, Germany and Italy 1999, Germany 2001, Austria 2003, Italy 2005, Italy 2008, Austria 2010 and Germany 2012. Plans are already well underway for the bands next tour to Belgium in 2014.

 

MCB have also worked with various conductors during their history. Conductors to date have included Andrew Barker, Eric Kidd, Nigel Boddice MBE and Alan Fernie. These events have usually taken place over a weekend and culminated in concert performances where the band perform new programmes learned over the course of 3 days.

In 1999 MCB became Scottish Youth Champions at the Scottish Youth Brass band Championships in Dalkeith. An impressive feat as this was their first time entering the contest. This led to them participating in the 2000 European Youth Brass Band Championships where they were placed a creditable 6th beating bands from both England and Wales.

 

The year 2000 also saw MCB perform in the City halls in Glasgow as part of the “Times Educational Supplement” Music Showcase. Following this the band was invited to perform in the National Association of British Youth Orchestra’s “Festival of British Youth Orchestras” at the Edinburgh Festival. These performances continued for about 6 years until the demise of the Association due to lack of sponsorship.

 

To help fundraise for these various events MCB have produced numerous recordings, On the Ball, One Voice, Adventures with Brass, Spirit of Brass and Pipin’ Hot Brass. Plans are at the early stage for a new recording to be made in 2014. This CD will be based on the various kid’s concerts that the band have performed over the last 4 years and will hopefully be released by Easter 2015.Glenn has always tried to bring world class soloists to Moray to work with MCB and to date the band have had the pleasure of accompanying the following international artists: 

Rick Taylor working with the band

 

  • Simone Rebello (UK), International Percussion soloist

  • Mark O’Keeffe (UK) Principal trumpet BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra

  • Les Neish (UK), International Tuba soloist

  • Derek Watkins (UK), Internationally renowned trumpet player

  • Andrea Tofanelli (ITALY), Internationally renowned trumpet player

  • Laurie Gargan (UK), former principal trumpet, Singapore Symphony Orchestra

  • Georgina Jackson (UK), Top UK Jazz trumpet player

  • Adam Rapa (USA), International trumpet soloist

  • Rex Richardson (USA), Yamaha International trumpet artist

  • Mike Lovatt (UK), Lead trumpet John Wilson Orchestra and BBC Big Band

  • Rick Taylor (UK) Internationally renowned trombonist

 

In addition to these performances the band has also run numerous workshops, these have included:

 

  • Her Majesty’s Royal Marine Band Scotland

  • Simone Rebello (UK), International Percussion soloist

  • Mark O’Keeffe, Principal trumpet BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra

  • Les Neish (UK), International Tuba soloist

  • Scottish Chamber Orchestra Brass Quintet

  • Georgina Jackson (UK), Top UK Jazz trumpet player

  • Pete Long(UK), Leader Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club Big Band

  • Rex Richardson (USA), Yamaha International trumpet artist

  • Mike Lovatt (UK), Lead trumpet John Wilson Orchestra and BBC Big Band

  • Rick Taylor (UK) Internationally renowned trombonist

 

June 2014 saw the band perform the World Premiere of Rick Taylor’s suite for Jazz trombone and brass band, written specifically for MCB the piece gave the band a chance to enjoy the experience of improvisation and also to enjoy a whole new aspect of music. Supporting charities both local and national is also an important part of MCB and since it was formed the band has raised money for groups close to its heart. These include:

 

  • Breast Cancer

  • Chest, Heart and Stroke Scotland

  • Riding for the Disabled

  • MS

  • Aila Coull Foundation

  • Sarcoma UK

 

These are just a few; there are many more that we have supported through concerts and our yearly “Carols at the Cathedral”.

 

The band has also been privileged to be invited to perform throughout the local area for various dignitaries. Performances at the Portsoy Boat Festival have seen the band play for Princess Anne and the Earl of Wessex. Princess Anne was also the special guest when the band played for the switching on of the fountain in Elgin High Street. 2012 saw the band play for the Rotary Club’s Northern conference in the AECC. Events like these have helped build the great reputation that Moray Concert Brass holds both here and abroad.