Welcome to our archive of BRASS FUSION events for 2012.

12 February 2012

Ringmer Quartet/Ensemble/Solo Contest

Four members of Brass Fusion entered the Open Quartet section again this year. There were five bands in the section and BF knew they had a battle on their hands with three of the bands being Championship level. They gave a respectable performance, receiving adjudicator comments such as ‘Nice warm sounds’, ‘Rhythmically good’ and ‘Good effort – awkwardly difficult piece’ but it wasn’t enough to beat the three top groups. Fourth place it was.

Andy, Paul and Sian entered the solo sections as well and competed against 23 players in the open slow melody and 14 in the open air varie section. As the contest only announced the top three in each section it was agreed between the three players that they must have all come ‘equal fourth’ in each section! Nice comments were received such as ‘lots of energy’, ‘very neatly played – impressive’, ‘excellent dynamics’ and ‘Lovely performance’. All players went away happy having represented Brass Fusion.

4 March 2012

A wet start to the morning didn’t seem to put any of the audience off for our first Brunch concert. Lewes Town Council organised a ‘Brass for Brunch’ event in aid of the Mayor of Lewes’ charities. Doors opened at 1030am and by 11am the hall was nearly full to capacity. The first half of the concert went very well with pieces such as It don’t mean a thing, Always look on the Bright Side of Life plus Martin performed a wonderful rendition of Georgia on my Mind, Andy performed Reflections on flugel and was then joined by John for the duet Eine Kleine Oompah Musik. The audience were invited to relax at their tables with coffee and free Sunday papers. Fresh pastries and continental breakfasts were available plus the casual atmosphere put everyone at ease. The two soloists, Steve and Paul contributed to the second half along with a very varied selection of music which completed the programme. The finale was Sussex by the Sea conducted by the Mayor and then attempting to keep up with the group in Mecklenburg.

Judging by the comments from many of the audience this will certainly not be the last time this event takes place. Thanks to Fiona from the Mayor’s office for all her help in promoting the event plus everyone else involved in getting the concert off the ground.

14 April 2012

The group were invited to perform at a 50th birthday/25th wedding anniversary party in Burgess Hill. Being friends of the hosts we were in casual dress and had the pleasure of partaking in the wonderful refreshments. Having set up at one end of the hall we started our first set of music. We had the honour of performing two arrangements done by a relative of one of our players, two cornet solos. Martin performed Carnival of Venice and Ben did The Lazy Trumpeter, both arranged especially for the group. A big thank you to Dennis for doing these for us and we hope he enjoyed our debut performances.

19 May 2012

Another private function, this time in the lovely grounds of an Estate near Barcombe. With the wonderful aroma of a hog roast, the group performed for a few hours to the guests. Many compliments received and an invitation to join in with the refreshments was welcomed, especially the lovely desserts!

2 June 2012

The Village of Henfield had a busy Jubilee four days. The Saturday started with the unveiling of a hanging basket monument made by the local blacksmith. Martin, Sian and their daughter Amy volunteered to perform a fanfare for the occasion. 11am sharp we struck up and as the fanfare echoed around the Village, residents came out to hear the speeches from prominent officials from the area. It was nice to be acknowledged and of course a quick plug for the Proms concert the following evening.

3 June 2012

And the band played on! Arriving at The Swan in Falmer we were met with a light rain and gentle breeze. Luckily we were in a large party tent/marquee but on inspection we were a bit concerned that such a large structure was only held down with tent pegs! We moved a few benches to try and secure but as we started our first set the tent started lifting slightly. About five pieces in we watched as the whole marquee lifted up completely over the heads of the group and blew right over into the next field. I don’t know who was more shocked – the group or the sheep! Things could have been nasty but luckily the whole frame stayed together and with a few seconds’ pause, the group continued playing. The sun came out and apart from a bit of a breeze it was a lovely afternoon. The hog roast was a welcome sustenance before heading back to Henfield to set up for the evening set.

Arriving at Henfield, the weather remained clear and we began to believe we might be very lucky with the evening staying dry. Setting up in a much more securely fixed marquee we looked forward to an exciting event. The first time the group had performed a Proms concert and the first time the Village had hosted one. The audience starting arriving about an hour before kick off and soon the beautiful grounds of the care home were bursting at the seams. Everyone had entered into the spirit of things and brought champagne, picnics and some very ‘loud’ outfits along with the flags ready for the finale. The group, along with Opera Singer Sidonie Winter, entertained the hundreds with light concert pieces followed by all the traditional pieces from the Proms including Radetsky, Fantasia and of course Pomp & Circumstance. With everyone on their feet for the last few pieces it was a real sight.The whole grounds awash with union jacks. It was estimated there were between 4-500 people there and about £1200 collected for local charities. What an evening to remember – well done all the group for their hard work and of course lips of steel! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if this was an annual event (obviously not the Jubilee bit!).

5 June 2012

Well, we really couldn’t be that lucky and manage all four days without rain could we? Arriving at The Red Lion in Brede it was nice but slightly overcast. We set up in the pub garden and enjoyed the first set. The wooden seats were all full and the listeners were all appreciative. Reaching the end of the first session we felt a few splatters. Percussion was ok as he was undercover but unfortunately the rest of us weren’t! Taking a short break to move music and banners under cover we discussed the next course of action. The publican was very obliging and cleared part of his restaurant for us to set up in and we completed our second session. The audience, surprisingly enough, weren’t blasted out. It must have been the low ceilings and thick carpet that absorbed a lot of the volume. Everyone was applauding and some nice comments as we left. Looking forward to our next appearance there once dates have been sorted out.

23 June 2012

Again we were lucky with the weather. The Vicarage garden was decorated with bunting and flags and the fete got off to a rousing start with BF opening the event. With a short break for refreshments and a chance for the Bell Ringers to entertain, we played most of the afternoon. An appreciative audience once again and the group them went back to Martin and Sian’s for a barbeque.

15 July 2012

Following the AGM of the Incorporated Society of Musicians, the group were asked to entertain in the lovely grounds of Burgess Hill School for Girls. The setting was perfect, the group were perched up on the balcony overlooking the gardens and the audience sat out on the grass. The music was well received by everyone and with a short break to partake in the scrumptuous cakes the concert finished early enough for some of the group to enjoy a meal in the Town afterwards.

22 July 2012

Brass Fusion were once again asked to open the season of concerts on Rottingdean Terraces Stage. The weather was, if honest, a little too hot but we really didn’t want to complain! With the seating full and the group facing out to the glorious glistening sea, the concert began. Every single piece seemed to be a hit with the audience and with the help of our wonderful Compere, Brian Grindall, it had to be one of our best concerts to date. Have a look at the photos on our gallery page and on our facebook page and you will see that it was almost like playing in the Mediterranean! Well done to our two photographers.

14 October 2012

The group had been booked to ‘be a surprise’ for a couple’s Ruby Wedding Anniversary.  We had to creep in round the back and set up on stage behind closed curtains while the party was in full swing.  Following a lovely speech by the husband in question, the curtains opened and we struck up with a rousing number.  The hall were fully entertained for about an hour.  Luckily Caroline hadn’t made cake as the group was then invited to have some of the wonderful refreshments from the party whilst guests departed and then had a couple of hours rehearsal, preparing a programme for our Christmas Concert in December.

21 October 2012

Barcombe Village has a wonderful new Hall built on the outskirts of their Village and Brass Fusion were asked to try and help raise funds for the Men’s Club which uses the new hall.  It was a bit of an experiment as the village residents don’t seem to support events like brass band concerts (Warbleton Band have performed a couple of times before).  We advertised in all local publications, had announcements on the radio, plus door to door leafleting.  Unfortunately it was another poor turnout audience-wise but those who did attend thoroughly enjoyed the programme we delivered.  We gained a few supporters for the group who promise to attend our other engagements so it was worth it just for that.  Caroline, despite it being her birthday, produced another wonderful cake for our consumption during the interval.

2 December 2012

Hever CastleWell, they promised us heating and lighting and they were true to their word. What they failed to tell us was that the heating would only last for the first half and the lighting was one strip light over in one corner!!! Luckily we had taken our own stand lights and had all wrapped up with plenty layers. Lots of people wandering around the Castle grounds, beautiful lights on all the trees and hedges. The Castle lights, altering every few seconds, were lovely to see once the sun had gone down. A light dusting of frost made the atmosphere extra special. We managed to give some of our forthcoming Christmas concert pieces and airing and they seemed to be well received by the public. Hot chocolate during the break helped warm us up ready for the very chilly second half. Roads were icy as we headed home but we’re all looking forward to our concert next Sunday.

6 December 2012

A small group from BF played at the Henfield Carol Concert.  Martin, Sian and their daughter Amy opened the proceedings with a fanfare and then the group accompanied the congregation with the Carols.  The group opened the second half with Mid Winter and a few more carols through the evening.  The final piece was Martin and Sidonie joining forces for a Trumpet/Voice feature.  The audience seemed to appreciate all the ‘acts’ throughout the evening and it was an ideal opportunity to leave a few concert flyers on the chairs!

9 December 2012

brassfusion xmas 2012

The hall was fairly full and the concert began with Pastime with Good Company.  The players walked on as their entry began and stood behind the chairs.  Once the whole group were playing, the percussion gave us a four bar solo to sit down and finish the piece. ben

Ben (left) was the first of our soloist and his rendition of Lazy Trumpeter was well received.

‘There wasn’t a dry eye in the house’ for Ruth’s On My Own horn solo.  A presentation was made to Mark on drums (below right) just before our last piece of the first half.  He is leaving us to spend time with his young family but we hope it wont be the last time we see him.


Mark GoodsonThe opening of the second half was interesting.  The idea of entering in darkness was great, except that we hadn’t allowed for the health and safety aspect of trying to find our seats!!!  We managed, just, and played the first Christmas piece with just stand lights and flashing pom poms on our santa hats.  Lights up and we continued the second half.  Steve was our next soloist with a great performance of SianBlue John.

A few more festive and traditional pieces and it was time for our final soloist.  Sian played the comical bass solo Tuba Smarties, even her foot rest was covered in smarties paper!

Finishing with a few more festive pieces the concert came to a close.  The audience were appreciative and the band happy with their performance.

It was then off to the local pub for a Christmas meal.  Shame it wasn’t quite up to last year’s standard but the Landlord was a great host.

Just a few small group carol jobs and a private wedding before the Christmas break.  Looking forward to some new music and engagements in the New Year.

16 December 2012

Five of BRASS FUSION played at St. Andrew’s Church, Burgess Hill to accompany the choir and congregation.  Some of the group dashed over from another concert to have a quick run through before the Service.  A lovely buffet was provided by Steve’s wife Julie who also played, along with Amy, as part of the brass group. The Service went well and a request for next year was made before we even left the Church!

17 December 2012

Seven of the group headed over to Haywards Heath to entertain some of the residents of a retirement housing scheme.  It was a chance to play some more of the wonderful arrangements from the Sounds of Christmas books recently purchased.  The residents loved the music and plied the group with mulled wine and nibbles as a thank you.  It is really enjoyable to perform to such an appreciative audience.

23 December 2012

BRASS FUSION played in the beautiful setting of Powder Mills Hotel in Battle for Dave and Ashleigh’s wedding.  A sprinkling of snow would have to complete the idyllic scene but it wasn’t to be.  Flash floods delayed some of the relatives arriving but the group entertained, again using the new Christmas books, until the Service started. A short break before playing to the guests again.  The highlight had to be Dave, in his smart Groom suit, along with his sister Helen, in her beautiful bridesmaid dress, both playing in the group.  The Christmas pieces were suited to this occasion perfectly.  Looking forward to welcoming Dave to the group in 2013.  A fond farewell to Mark and best wishes to him and his young family.

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