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Celebrating our 140th Anniversary



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220 Young People Excel in Bands Contest

Friday 29th March 2019

220 members of The Boys’ Brigade participated in the organisation’s Scottish Bands Contest last Saturday afternoon (23 March) at Hutcheson’s Grammar School in Glasgow.

The Bands Contest is the Annual showcase and competition event for new and established bands from across the organisation in Scotland.

The audience of over 300 people was entertained by brass, woodwind and pipe musicians from across the country. This year’s event welcomed bands from Largs, Troon, Dundee, Monifieth, Bearsden, Wishaw, Johnstone, Kincardine, Port Glasgow and Dunblane.

Clinching the Pipe Band Championship trophy was the band from 1st Troon and in the Marching Band Championship class, Wishaw Brigade Band took the title. 1st Bearsden Pipe Band triumphed in the Development Pipe Band band category and the band from 3rd Johnstone won the Marching Band Development competition.

This event, which first took place in 1980, also welcomed several members from Girls’ Brigade Scotland.

Sean Duff, 16, member of the Dunblane Band, said:

“I’ve learned how to play music from scratch in The Boys’ Brigade. There’s no way I would be able to read music if it weren’t for the opportunities here. I have had great opportunities, such as the bands tour to Germany last year.

“I am proud to be in be in the BB. It’s belonging to a community which is encouraging and educational, but it’s relaxed and there’s plenty time to have a laugh.”

John Sharp, Director of The Boys’ Brigade in Scotland, said:

“This year’s Contest was a wonderful occasion and a perfect demonstration of musical talent and teamwork. Every young person and adult volunteer should be immensely proud of what they have achieved.

“Music allows young people to develop both hard and soft skills, providing an opportunity to express themselves, develop their musical talents and also work as a team. I believe it is so important that every young person has access to quality music tuition – in schools and in the community.

“Whether in music, creativity, science, sport, social action or adventure, The Boys’ Brigade is passionate about giving young people the space to grow and reach their full potential.”

Red Hot Chilli Pipers’ Craig Munro was amongst the contest’s adjudicators. Craig stressed the importance of events such as BB Bands Contest.

He said:

“These competitions are vitally important as it gives the young people so many different challenges – playing as one within the band, but also playing in front of an audience.”

There was a wide age range amongst the bands, with some players as young as seven and as old as 18 performing.

Logan Stewart, 11, Member of the 6th/8th Dundee Band, said:

“I’ve started learning to play to pipes in the BB four years ago. It’s really fun and opens up many new opportunities. I’ve been able to play lots of local and national events – and even competitions like the Scottish Bands Contest.”

Scott Ellis, 14, bandmaster and member of the 1st Bearsden BB Pipe Band, said:

“I started to learn to play the pipes in BB only a couple of years ago. Having a pipe band is a great opportunity for BB members. The Bands Contest is a really important event because it’s a chance to show how good you are, but also learn on what areas we need to improve on.

“I hope to continue playing the pipes long after I’ve left the BB.”

Since the first event in 1980, over 12,000 young people have performed at The Boys’ Brigade’s Scottish Bands Contest. To learn more about music and the wider opportunities of BB, please visit boys-brigade.scot




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