@ Concert at Salvation Army hall, Lower Earley, February 2018
The band's first concert of 2018 was at SA church in Lower Earley on 24th February, performing to a full audience together with choir of Hawkedon Primary School.
The programme included a number of new additions to the band's repertoire, among them Alan Catherall's arrangement of Bohemian Rhapsody, the same arranger's sparkling variations on the main theme from Oklahoma, and Alan Duncan's version of Hedwig's Theme from the Harry Potter films. Soloists were Tracey Hall on tenor horn with Demelza, and Mark Dallas on cornet with Share My Yoke.
The choir made a very enjoyable contribution to the evening, with ensemble songs on the theme of peace, and several impressive solos.
The event raised funds for the Salvation Army "Big Collection", supporting social and community work in the UK.
@ St Crispin's, Wokingham, December 2017, December 2017
Ascot Brass joined the combined local Singhealthy community choirs at Wokingham's St. Crispin's School on 16th December, playing seasonal pieces and backing the choir and audience for carols and a version of Twelve Days of Christmas that made for a rousing finale.
@ Windsor Parish Church, December 2017, December 2017
The Taplow Youth Choir once again proved to be an excellent partner for the band's Sounds of Christmas concert at Windsor Parish Church on 9th December. As well as music from the band and choir, actor David Robb contributed entertaining readings in each half, and Richard Gash made his customary good job of compering.
Band pieces included Sleigh Ride, Stephen Bulla's Mid-Winter and Mark Freeh's version of White Christmas, as well as Alan Fernie's arrangements of Winter Wonderland and A Merry Little Christmas and Peter Graham's Away in a Manger (Allan Martin, flugel).
The choir's pieces included John Rutter's Nativity Carol and Eric Whiteacre's Lux Aurumque, and the band provided backing for soloist Eve Shanu-Wilson singing Walking in the Air, from Howard Blake's The Snowman. The audience were in good voice as ever for carols and Schneewalzer.
The event was in aid of Macmillan Cancer Care, and takings from entrance tickets and retiring collection amounted to over £2,950.
@ Beaconsfield, December 2017, December 2017
The band joined with Taplow Children's Choir and Taplow Boys' Choir at St. Michael's Church in Beaconsfield for a Friday evening concert in aid of the local Rennie Grove hospice on 1st December. A very Christmassy programme included solos Rocking Carol (Mark Dallas, cornet) and Peter Graham's arrangement of Away in a Manger (Allan Martin, flugel horn), and horn feature The Most Wonderful Time of the Year.
Audience participation took the form of two carols and a special arrangement by the band's own Mervyn Clarke combining Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Rockin' Round the Christmas Tree. A capacity auidence made for an excellent evening's fundraising for the hospice.
@ Marlow, September 2017
The band joined with the Thames Valley Chorus a capella ensemble at Marlow's All Saints church on Saturday 30th September to present a concert in aid of Rotary Club charities.
Highlights included My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose (cornet soloist Mark Dallas), Friedmann's Slavonic Rhapsody No 2 and cornet trio Trumpets Wild from the band, the New Ashmolean Marching Band Society & Students Conservatory Band from the choir, and selections from My Fair Lady from both band and choir.
The event was very well attended, and benefited from entertaining and informative compering by star trombonist Stuart Hall.
@ Taplow, May 2017
Ascot Brass joined with Taplow Girls Choir in our annual concert at St Nicolas Church to raise funds for the Taplow Choirs.
Under the direction of acting MD Kelvin Ketteringham, the band's programme opened and closed with marches - William Turkington's Able and Goff Richards's Barnard Castle - with a mix of lyrical pieces and faster-paced items in between, ranging from Paul Sharman's Flow Gently, Sweet Afton to Vartabed's Armenian Sabre Dance.
Band solos were performed by Mark Dallas on cornet (Langford's My Love is Like a Red, Red Rose) and Stacey Hall on tenor horn (Rondo from Mozart's horn concerto no.2), with a cornet trio playing Harold Walters's Trumpets Wild.
The choir was on impressive form, as always. As well as ensemble pieces, there was a set of four soloists in the first half and of duets in the second half, all performed with confidence and style.