On Friday 15th March, both Regent Brass bands took to the stage at the Church of the Ascension to perform at the latest in their regular concert series there along with soprano Tracy King and her accompanist Li Lin Teoh. These concerts have become a real highlight of the band’s calendar as they allow members of the local community to come and hear music they may not otherwise be familiar with, however in this case the evening also gave both bands the opportunity to perform their respective “test-pieces” in advance of the London and Southern Counties Area Contest.

The first half was led by Regent Community Brass, who performed a varied set of music that that included an interesting mix of William Rimmer, Eric Ball and Paul McCartney! After opening with the rousing march “The Australasian”, the band’s flugel player Lisa Neale then gave a lovely performance of “Here, There and Everywhere” before the band moved on to a bright and breezy performance of “Honey Pie”. Tracy then took to the stage to perform ? before the band returned to perform “Devon Fantasy”, the set work for the area contest. The programme was concluded with an interesting arrangement of “Yellow Submarine” by Alan Fernie in a march style, which ended with the percussion fading out to silence and a rather perplexed audience being unsure when to clap!

Regent Brass took the stage after the interval to perform Mark Freeh’s arrangement of “Malaguena”, followed by the band’s principal cornet Barbara King giving a virtuosic rendition of “Polka Brilliante”. Tracy returned to stage to perform two very moving pieces, with a beautiful performance of ? followed by the haunting “Tonight” from West Side Story. The band then followed this with “Harmony Music” by Philip Sparke before euphonium players George Adamson and John Gafney took the stage to perform Philip Doe’s delightful “Lullaby”. Their performance was rounded off with Barrie Gott’s popular “Light Walk” before Regent Community Brass returned to the stage for one final massed item – a romp through Andrew Duncan’s arrangement of “Loch Lomond”.

All in all, the concert was very well received by the audience and the band would like to extend their thanks to Tracy King, Li Lin Teoh, Father Gareth Bevan and the Church of the Ascension for making the evening such a success.