In the Prizes at the National Finals

The band is proud to have been awarded 2nd place in the Second Section Final of the National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain, held at The Centaur, Cheltenham Racecourse, on September 15th 2018. The band gained the invitation to represent Wales at the contest through winning the Second Section at the Welsh Regional Championships in March.

All 18 competing bands were required to perform the set test piece ‘Firestorm’ by Stephen Bulla, with three adjudicators to impress – Roger Webster, Brian Rostron and David Hirst.

Full results for the section are below, along with a selection of comments on the band’s performance from brass band media.

Position Band Conductor Draw
1 Middleton Band Kevin Gibbs 13
2 Pontardulais Town Band Paul Jenkins 4
3 North Skelton Band Lewis Wilkinson 14
4 Bollington Brass Band Peter Christian 15
5 Crofton Silver Band Dean Jones 12
6 Milton Keynes Brass Jonathan Mott 11
7 South Yorkshire Police Band Leigh Baker 6
8 Shrewton Silver Band Michael Dunford 16
9 Helston Town Band John Berryman 7
10 J36 Brass Steven Craig 17
11 Annan Town Band Paul Drury 5
12 Ifton Colliery Band Scott Lloyd 3
13 Hucknall & Linby Brass Paul Whyley 10
14 LGB Brass Band Ian Stewart 1
15 Flixton Band Matt Ryan 2
16 Campbeltown Brass Paul Kiernan 9
17 St. Sebastian Wokingham Band John Watts 8
18 Rolls Royce (Derby) Band Graham Cardwell 18

Best instrumentalist: Jo Robinson – Soprano Cornet (North Skelton)

From 4barsrest.com Purposeful intent from the off. Descriptive images of war and military right from the off. Tempos are good but occasionally the clarity drops but the confidence from all on stage is coming through.

The quality playing remains and the soloists step up to the mark. This is a real team effort and the excitement builds right to the close.

Overall: Very impressive stuff from the word go. The odd moment, but an account of real musical intent.

Star Player: The first clich’d ‘team’ effort of the weekend. Everyone stepped up there.

From the BritishBandsman.com Solid start with a great sense of style! Lovely dynamics that colour the music so well. This band really keep you engaged. Conductor is really clear in conveying the story of this piece… This is clearly all about the music! Ensemble really tight throughout this opening section. Bravo!!

Slow section- A tiny bit of intonation creeps in. Lovely solo lines throughout. The band are taking lots of risks with their lower end dynamics and its really paying off!

Final section ticks along with the same quality as earlier and accels well. Great balance between sections and all effects are heard. Band not holding back but it works.. oozes quality. Great early marker for us!!

STAR SECTION :- Condutor (Lovely interpretation)

STAR PLAYER :- Cornet

From Brass Band World on Twitter @bontband deliver a very convincing performance. We hear the detail of the score come across, complimented by a huge, yet always controlled band sound. Quality playing around the band and soloists do well. An early contender for sure!

Further Success in Cardiff

The band continued its strong start to the 2018 contesting season, achieving 2nd place in the Championship Section at the opening contest of the 2018 Welsh League series, held at Willows High School in Cardiff on April 28th 2018.

The band’s back row cornet section brought further silverware back to the Bont in winning the ‘Terry Hill Best Back Row Cornet Section Trophy’.

In this Own Choice contest, adjudicated by Robert Childs and David Hirst, the band chose to perform ‘Sinfonietta No. 3’ by Etienne Crausaz. Full results for the section are below.

Best Back Row Cornet Section
Best Back Row Cornet Section
Position Band Piece Draw
1 Ebbw Valley Brass
(Gareth Ritter)
A Kensington Concerto
(Eric Ball)
1
2 Pontardulais Town Band
(Paul Jenkins)
Sinfonietta No. 3
(Etienne Crausaz)
4
3 Tylorstown Band
(Gary Davies)
A Kensington Concerto
(Eric Ball)
3
4 Markham & District Band
(Matthew Rowe)
Terra Australis
(Martin Ellerby)
2
5 Lewis Merthyr Band
(Craig Roberts)
Trittico
(James Curnow)
5

Best instrumentalist: Jeff Thomas – Flugelhorn (Ebbw Valley Brass)
Best horn: Deborah Bull (Ebbw Valley Brass)
Best back row cornet section: Pontardulais Town Band

Victory at the Welsh Regional Championship

Best Percussion Section – Lizzie Findley, Stephen John, Andrew Cooper

The band has been crowned Second Section Champions at the Welsh Regional Championship 2018, held at the Brangwyn Hall on March 17th 2018. In addition, the band has been invited to represent Wales at the finals of the National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain, to be held at The Centaur, Cheltenham Racecourse, on September 15th 2018.

In a strong field of 9 bands, performing the set test piece ‘Ex Terra Lucem’ by Jonathan Bates, the band’s percussion section also claimed the ‘Yorweth & Megan Gowing Memorial Trophy’ for the ‘Best Percussion Section’.

A special mention too for the band’s youngest member on the day, 2nd Cornet player Aled Tumelty, who has progressed through the Junior Band and has now made his debut contest appearance with the senior band – what a memorable debut appearance it was!

Full results for the section are below.

Position Band Conductor Draw
1 Pontardulais Town Band Paul Jenkins 2
2 Ifton Colliery Band Scott Lloyd 6
3 Newport Borough Band Robin Hackett 7
4 Ammanford Town Silver Band Glyn Davies 3
5 Royal Buckley Town Band Keith Jones 5
6 Abertillery Town Band Joshua Ruck 4
7 Penclawdd Band Tony Small 8
8 Crwbin Silver Band Craig Roberts 1
9 Blaenavon Town Band David Langley 9

Best instrumentalist: Seamus Gallaher – Cornet (Newport Borough)
Best percussion section: Pontardulais Town Band

 

A full report on the second section contest from 4barsrest.com can be read by following this link.

Some positive comments on the performance from brass band media on the day were as follows:

From 4barsrest.com The bar is raised by Pontardulais to follow — with a richly courted and textured account under Paul Jenkins. A super soprano player was such a tasteful focal point, whilst the drummer went all heavy metal in the finale to bring things to a rousing close.

From 4barsrest.com on Twitter A powerful blaze of kaleidoscopic light from Pontardulais. Cozy Powell on drums gave it the welly to close a fine show.

From the BritishBandsman.com A bright opening, light on its feet, with soaring euphonium dominating the texture. The martial music has a touch of brilliance about it, with lovely euphonium flourishes and tightly balanced close harmony. Subtle melodic details and shapes are coming across – nicely nuanced to contrast with medieval pastiche moments and the dissonant finish – excellent work and also control in the diminuendo to the end from muted cornets.

The soprano cornet soloist excels again in shaping he principal melody, supported by a resonant accompaniment. The flugel horn and solo cornet match the soprano – nice touch. This is being carefully and respectfully delivered. The controlled pianissimo ending is so quiet we can here the conversations from the bar next door – well done band! The ending is really beautiful – measured and controlled – out of which the glitzy finale emerges naturally and also expressively from the lower band.

Paul Jenkins then gradually winds things up, but the jazz fusion music is never over done – all in style and never so loud that we can’t hear the detail. When he lets the percussion off the leash, band responds with drive and power. Percussion went ott on the last chord but lots to admire in the playing here

Burry Port Contest

The band achieved 5th place in the Championship Section at the second leg of the 2017 Welsh League series, this year held at Burry Port Memorial Hall on October 7th 2017.

With what the band believes to be the first competitive UK performance of the chosen test piece, the adjudicator, Ian Porthouse, placed the band amongst a strong field as shown in the full results below.

Position Band Piece Draw Points
1 Goodwick Brass
(Matthew Jenkins)
A King’s Lie
(Stan Nieuwenhuis)
6 196
2 Ebbw Valley Brass
(Gareth Ritter)
Fragile Oasis
(Peter Meechan)
4 195
3 Llwydcoed Band
(Chris Turner)
Symphony in Two Movements
(Edward Gregson)
7 194
4 Tylorstown Band
(Gary Davies)
Chivalry
(Martin Ellerby)
8 193
5 Pontardulais Town Band
(Paul Jenkins)
Sinfonietta No. 3
(Etienne Crausaz)
2 192
6 City of Cardiff M1 Band
(Nigel Seaman)
Endeavour
(Philip Sparke)
? 191
7 Burry Port Town Band
(Christopher Bond)
The Essence of Time
(Peter Graham)
5 190
8 Markham & District Band
(Matthew Rowe)
Dances and Arias
(Edward Gregson)
? 188

Best instrumentalist: Lawrence Savage – Cornet (Ebbw Valley Brass)
Best soprano cornet: Ellen Waite (Ebbw Valley Brass)
Best percussion section: Goodwick Brass

Contest Success in Merthyr

Bradley Barnes
Best Instrumentalist – Bradley Barnes, Euphonium

The band are pleased to have achieved 3rd place in the Championship Section at the opening contest of the 2017 Welsh League series, held at Merthyr Tydfil Leisure Centre on May 6th 2017.

In addition, the band are delighted that solo euphonium player, Bradley Barnes, was awarded the ‘Best Instrumentalist’ prize for the section.

In this Own Choice contest, adjudicated by Melvin White, the band chose to perform ‘Alhambra’ by Jan de Haan. Full results for the section are below.

Position Band Piece Draw Points
1 Llwydcoed Band
(Chris Turner)
Reflections on Swan Lake
(Stephen Roberts)
3 190
2 Tylorstown Band
(Gary Davies)
Salute to Youth
(Gilbert Vinter)
5 188
3 Pontardulais Town Band
(Paul Jenkins)
Alhambra
(Jan de Haan)
4 187
4 Markham & District Band
(Matthew Rowe)
Paganini Variations
(Philip Wilby)
6 186
5 Ebbw Valley Brass
(Gareth Ritter)
Salute to Youth
(Gilbert Vinter)
1 185
W Burry Port Town Band Reflections on Swan Lake
(Stephen Roberts)
2 W

Best instrumentalist: Bradley Barnes – Euphonium (Pontardulais Town Band)
Best horn: Evan Key (Llwydcoed Band)
Best back row: Llwydcoed Band