Young brass wanted for globetrotting Northamptonshire band

Youth Brass 2000 members celebrate another festival win

Young brass musicians could soon be playing in faraway parts as an award-winning Northamptonshire-based marching band hits the road for gigs at home and abroad.

Youth Brass 2000, Britain’s Premier Section National Youth Champion Brass Band for seven years, is looking for players to join their band.

Welcoming brewers of all skill levels, up to the age of 19, Youth Brass 2000 President Don Collins is eager to recruit more teenagers for their trip to Italy later this year and Sweden in 2023.

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He said: “You might imagine the waiting list to join Youth Brass 2000 would be very, very long, but you would be very, very wrong. Like most marching bands right now, recruiting is tough.

“Due to the band’s completely independent status, there are no natural feeder channels in the band – no senior band connections, no music hub connections, no school or natural community connections, apart from being in the East Midlands, we’re not exactly in the middle of marching band territory.

Mr Collins thinks the group’s success could be off-putting.

He said: “Perhaps younger players are deterred by the band’s surprisingly high profile and domestic and international success and assume the entry standards are incredibly tough.

“We have no entry requirements, just full commitment. To be fair, we have managed to attract many young brass players from all over.

“Who wouldn’t appreciate the fabulous concerts we play as well as all the great competitions we take part in? We are currently National Youth Champions, The Brass in Concert Youth Champions, The British Open Youth Champions, 4 Bars Rest Youth Band of the Year and Butlins First Section Youth Champions.

Any new members could expect an annual tour, this year to Lake Garda in Italy, and could represent England in the Premier section of the European Youth Championships in Malmö, Sweden in May 2023.

The group would like to point out that it is made up of a caretaker and a team of registered licensed guides.

Mr Collins said: “To reassure parents of potential new members, the group is a fully incorporated registered charity with a fully elected unpaid committee. We are all DBS vetted, plus we have five registered licensed chaperones and the full set of a fully trained backup team.

“Financially, we do not receive any Arts Council or any other external funding. We don’t have a major sponsor, but we try very hard to keep costs down, so being part of Youth Brass 2000 won’t break the bank.

“It’s been a tough few years for everyone, but we at YB2K are working really hard to keep this part of our British heritage alive and vibrant.”

Formed in 1989 from the embers of Rigid Containers Youth Band founding leader Eddie Pain, they set out to form the “greatest youth band in the world”.

The band rehearses at Wilbarston Village Hall. To find out more about the group call 07860 525352 or email [email protected]

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