Brass in Concert Championship announces 2018 adjudication panel and event news

The organisers of the Brass in Concert Championship have revealed the line-up of adjudicators for the 42nd Festival, which will be held at Sage Gateshead on Sunday 18 November in association with Yamaha and Banks Group.

The confirmed adjudication panel and their respective roles is as follows:

Quality of Performance: Nick Grace and Roger Argente

Programme Content: Chris King

Entertainment and Presentation: Jeremy Wise and Terry Carter

Soloists: Owen Farr

Brass in Concert Chairman John Woods told BBW: “We are delighted to be able to reveal such a high-quality panel of judges for this year’s event. All are, of course, vastly experienced professional musicians, with our Quality of Performance adjudicators Nick Grace and Roger Argente complementing the musical quality background of the festival. As retired Principal Director of Music of HM Royal Marines, Nick Grace has already been a member of panel in 2017. Furthermore, Roger Argente brings experience from the orchestral world, brass education and as a session musician in the movie world and one of the main drivers of Superbrass.

For Entertainment and Presentation, Jeremy Wise, who has previously conducted at Brass in Concert will be accompanied by Terry Carter, who has vast experience in the broadcast and media industries.

Chris King has masterminded many musical programmes for the British Army as the Bandmaster of the Band of the Grenadier Guards and makes an ideal Programme Content judge, while Owen Farr needs no introduction as one of the finest soloists from the UK brass band scene, having performed on stage at Sage Gateshead many times in the past and won BiC solo awards in 2009 and ‘14.

Already announced are the adjudication panel for the inaugural Youth Brass in Concert taking place on Saturday 17 November, which are:

Quality of Performance: Richard Evans

Entertainment and Presentation: Helen Harrelson

As extensively reported in the banding press, Brass in Concert will continue with the same marking system to recognise the importance of the quality of bands’ programme content, which accounts for 20 percent of the available marks. Quality of performance accounts for 60 percent of the points, while entertainment and presentation make up the other 20 percent of the total. Specific guidelines on the role of each category are supplied in advance to bands and adjudicators. John Woods continued: “After every Brass in Concert Festival, we examine every aspect of the weekend very carefully, and this year we also took the opportunity to consult and meet with competing bands in this regard. As such, with a highly skilled adjudication panel in place, we remain confident that the existing scoring system satisfies the current needs of the event and preserves its status as the leading entertainment contest in the world.”
John Woods added: “In addition to the contest, we have an appealing performance lined up for this year’s gala concert, with Foden’s Band and Matt Ford presenting a themed set entitled Sinatra and the Swing Legends. Elementary workshops, taster sessions and a performance by Manger Musikklag from Norway are also on offer.

Saturday afternoon will also see a masterclass a Yamaha artist. This will be held in the Northern Rock Foundation Hall at 4.00pm. Admission is free for this, although patrons are advised to be there early as numbers are limited.

Brass in Concert will have further announcements relating to this year’s Festival in the next few weeks, including the continuation of the audience vote award. Tickets are selling faster than ever, so we urge anyone wishing to attend in November to avoid any disappointment by contacting the Ticket Office or logging on to the Sage Gateshead website very soon.”

Tickets for Youth Brass in Concert on Saturday 17 November are available from Sage Gateshead Ticket Office on 0191 443 4661 or online at, priced £10.00 and £5 (concessions). Tickets for World of Brass in Concert featuring Foden’s and Matt Ford are £27.00, £18.00 and £10.00, and Tickets for the Brass in Concert Championship on Sunday 18 November are £30.00, £22.00 and £12.00. Booking fees will apply.

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