Roaring at the Nationals!

By: ChrisThompson - 19 April 2016

Another excellent day for the LYB organisation at the RNCM

It was another early start, but the 17th April 2016 was another momentous day for the Lions Youth Brass organisation. Once again, all three bands were heading to Manchester to compete in the National Youth Brass band Championships at the Royal Northern College of Music. To make the day even more special, it was our Chairperson, Jane Stubbs' 60th birthday and the Beginners decided to help her celebrate by leaving Sandbach at 7 in the morning!

In fact, the Beginners were starting the whole day's proceedings for the second year in a row, opening the Beginner Band contest and the whole competition with their performance at 9 am. They did so in style, impressing judges David Thornton and Brett Baker, who complimented the band on their 'very good sounds,' 'good spirit' and 'excellent balance.' Little did they know it at the time, but their fantastic performance was good enough come results time to see them awarded the 'Band with Most Potential' award, completing a hat trick of awards in 2014, 2015 and 2016!

As the euphoria over this calmed down, the Juniors prepared for their performance in the Junior Section. They too put in a stellar performance that oozed style, confidence and fun! Judges Paul Duffy and Katrina Marzella were fulsome in their praise of the band, declaring the band had a 'great sound,' 'showed off all' their skills and urged the band to 'continue to push in terms of repertoire to help you grow.' Once again, results time was to bring success as the band were delighted to discover they had equalled last years 4th place, but had gone one better by gaining a Gold award - beating last years Silver!

Finally, at the end of a long day, the Youth Band appeared in the Championship Section. Just like the Beginners, they had to impress judges David Thornton and Brett Baker, and impress they did. British Bandsman Magazine declared that they 'loved the energy in Simon Dobson's Firefly,' and stated that 'Lions Youth Brass delivered the goods here today, what a fine bunch they are!' Again, come results time, success was in the air as two well deserving recipients were about to be rewarded. Firstly, after his excellent performance of 'On With The Motley' during the bands programme, star Soprano player William Dakin was awarded the 'Best Instrumentalist' award - the first time ever a Lions player has won this prestigious trophy. 

Secondly, our long-serving chairperson, Jane Stubbs, topped off her birthday celebrations in style as she was awarded the 'Brian Hicks Memorial Trophy' for her dedication to Lions and youth banding. There is no more-deserving recipient of the award than Jane and everyone at Lions is delighted that her efforts have been so publicly rewarded. Nothing is ever too much - Jane just gets it done - and we all owe her a great deal! 

Finally, the Youth Band were awarded a Silver Award, which placed them 4th overall, a fantastic achievement at the very highest level of Youth banding. 

Well done to everyone for representing Lions Youth Brass so well - you did the organisation proud!

What a day!