The Skelmanthorpe Methodist Church Hall was packed to capacity by friends, supporters and listeners, all waiting with excited anticipation of a fantastic night’s entertainment.
Not wanting to disappoint, Skelmanthorpe Training Band, under the baton of Alan Coe set in motion the evening’s extravaganza with an enthusiastic interpretation of Johann Strauss’ “Radetzky March“. More inspirational performances followed, prompting the comment from the Brass Band Community’s President, Ray Elderton, "Our Brass Band Community includes forty children in our Training Band and Foundation Groups and they all improve each time I hear them!"
Warm applause and merriment ended the Training Band’s spot as percussion tutor, Mike Cook, led his sombrero-wearing trainees in a ‘conga-train’ dance around the church hall, while the band played Luis Valdez’s “La Bamba.”
Next on stage were Skelmanthorpe B Band and its Musical Director, Phil Garlick, kicking off with Goff Richards’ arrangement of “Breezing Down Broadway“. The first of two B Band soloists, Oliver Booth, gave a beautiful performance of Alan Fernie’s “Let Me Try Again” on the baritone, while Ben Scholes, the second soloist, demonstrated an amazing talent for the xylophone, with his spectacular execution of W. G. Lemon’s “Helter Skelter.” Cheering and applause filled the hall, honouring the enormous talents of the two young men.
The Band closed the first half of the concert with another Goff Richards arrangement, “James Bond Collection“, after which, everyone was invited to take refreshments. These were served by a
party of volunteers and a huge thank you goes out to them for their continued and valued assistance.
With the audience suitably refreshed, The Skelmanthorpe Band took to the stage, opening the second half with J. P. Sousa’s quick and energetic march, “The Thunderer.” The audience’s attention was captured by the performances of two outstanding soloists, David Hirst on principal cornet, playing John Iverson’s “Tico Tico” and Laura Brown on solo horn, playing Hugh Nash’s “Demelza“. In addition to the huge playing talent of the band as a whole, there are within it, many gifted arrangers. One such person is Mike Kilmartin, the Band’s soprano cornet player, who arranged and featured in his own arrangement of “Gonna Entertain“. Musical Director, John Roberts, brought the band’s performance to an end with the Fugue from Philip Sparke’s “Graduation Day“.
The climax to the evening’s entertainment was the massed band’s interpretation of “Hootenanny“, consecutively lead by each band’s MD.