Welcome to the Online Home of Pontardulais Town Band
Having enjoyed its first taste of virtual contesting with the Kapitol Cory Online Brass Band Championships, the band entered the Online Whit Friday Championships, run by Foden’s Band.
The contest was broadcast on the 28th and 29th of May, the weekend the Whit Friday contest usually takes place in the Tameside and Saddleworth areas.
A total of 119 bands from around the world entered the contest, performing 57 different marches! In true Whit Friday fashion, all bands competed against each other, but with prizes awarded to the highest placed bands in each section. The contest was adjudicated by Michael Fowles.
Pontardulais Town Band were band number 38 in the draw, performing ‘The Contestor’ by T. J. Powell, which starts at around 2:56:10 in the video below.
The band were pleased to be placed 35th overall (from 119) and 15th in the 1st Section (from 24).
The band were thrilled to compete in the Kapitol Cory Online Brass Band Championships 2021, a virtual music contest broadcast live on YouTube and hosted by the Cory Band. Broadcast over three successive weekends in March, the contest included Championship, 1st to 4th, University and Youth Sections, with bands entering from all around the world!
Pontardulais Town Band competed in the 1st Section, broadcast on 20th March in a field of 12 bands. The adjudicators for the section were Cory Band members Chris Thomas, Simon Howell and Helen Williams.
The entire contest is worth watching, but if you only want to view our entry, it starts at 1:12:57 in the video below.
The running order for the section was as follows:
- Coalburn Silver Band (Scotland)
- Strabane Brass (Northern Ireland)
- Johnstone Band (Scotland)
- Pontardulais Town Band (Wales)
- Dallas Brass Band (USA)
- Langley Band (England)
- Seindorf Arian Deiniolen (Wales)
- Freckleton Brass Band (England)
- North Skelton Band (England)
- Drogheda Brass Band (Republic of Ireland)
- Wotton Silver (England)
- Strata Brass (England)
The band are delighted and very grateful to have been awarded a grant from the Mynydd Y Gwair Windfarm Local Community Fund, which will go towards carrying out improvements to the Bandroom.
Full details of all local community organisations awarded a grant are on the Swansea Council for Voluntary Service website.
The ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic has unfortunately restricted our ability to spread some much needed Christmas cheer in the local community.
Instead of public performances at local supermarkets, pubs, in the community and of course our annual Christmas concert, we are delighted to share a selection of past performances of our favourite Pontardulais Town Band Christmas pieces to put you in the festive mood.
As we countdown to the big day, we will be posting a new piece every day, including something VERY special on the weekend of the 19th/20th.
Keep an eye on our Facebook page, or check this page for updates!
24th December – We Wish You A Merry Christmas
For our final video, a socially distanced offering of the piece we normally finish our carol playing sessions with.
We hope you’ve enjoyed our Christmas videos, we end with a message from the Chair of Pontardulais Town Band:
This year has proved to be a difficult one for us all. We are very grateful to all of you for your support in these very challenging times and value your continued assistance. The committee has been busy in working together and collaborating in keeping our members safe. We are now looking forward to the future in 2021 and would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.Sue Aldrich
Chairperson, Pontardulais Town Band
23rd December – The Twelve Days of Christmas
Time for a sing-along! This has become a bit of a tradition at our annual Christmas Concert!
22nd December – (Not So) Silent Night
Now a different take, by Jonathan Mead, on the classic Silent Night, performed by the Senior, Training and Beginner Bands. Definitely another one to watch until the end…
21st December – Mary, Did You Know?
A change of pace today with this piece, arranged by our solo horn player, Tara Smith.
20th December – Santa Claus-Trophobia
Next up is the second of our special videos, recorded especially for this Christmas!
19th December – Jingle Bells
Here is the first of the special videos as promised, recorded especially for this Christmas!
18th December – Winter Wonderland
Another festive favourite today!
17th December – Christmas Overture
How many Christmas songs and carols can you count in today’s offering?
16th December – One Day I’ll Fly Away
Next up is a solo from our soprano cornet player, Kevin ‘Snowman’ Shanklin. Once again, keep watching for the hidden bonus track at the end…
15th December – A Christmas Adventure
Today’s piece feature a solo from our solo horn player, Tara Smith.
14th December – Jingle Bells
Now a joint effort from the Senior, Training and Beginners Bands.
13th December – O Holy Night
Next up, we feature our solo euphonium player, Lyndon Harris. Watch to the end for an extra treat…
12th December – Festive Intrada
Sit back, relax and enjoy our first piece, Festive Intrada – do keep a look out for a very naughty elf…
Due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic there is no Remembrance Parade in Pontarddulais this year. This video, using footage from previous years’ parades and the 2018 WW1 100 Years Remembrance Concert, as well as contributions from Pontarddulais Male Choir and Pontarddulais Town Band, has been put together as a tribute to the service and sacrifice of our Armed Forces, veterans and their families.
The band are delighted to have been awarded a generous grant from The Arts Council of Wales, funding which has been made available by the Welsh Government as part of its Cultural Recovery Fund.
The grant will go a long way in helping the band continue its activites as best as possible during the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.
The band are very grateful to The Arts Council of Wales for the awarding of this grant and for its continued support.
Further information is available in the news release on The Arts Council of Wales website.
The band’s first ever ‘Virtual Concert’, published during the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, and associated fundraiser has been featured by BBC Cymru, both in a television news broadcast on Sunday 13th July and online.
The Virtual Concert is available to view from the Virtual Concert post on this website.
The band was sadly unable to hold its Annual Concert at Pontardulais Comprehensive School, scheduled for July 4th, due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.
Instead, the band were delighted to share its first ever Virtual Concert, which included some of its highlight performances and outstanding soloists’ contributions from previous Annual Concerts. The virtual compere for the evening was Band President, Garry Owen.
The band hope you enjoy the concert and encourage you to share it with your friends and family to enjoy too.
|Men of Harlech||Traditional|
|1.||Ol’ Man River||Oscar Hammerstein and Jerome Kern, arr. Mark Freeh||2015|
|2.||Prelude on Two Welsh Hymns||Jonathan Mead||2019|
Guest Soloist: Chris Thomas – Trombone
|Hoagy Carmichael arr. Bill Geldard||2015|
Guest Soloist: Tom Hutchinson – Trumpet
|Billy May arr. A. Morrison||2018|
Guest Soloist: Sheona White – Tenor Horn
|6.||The World’s Greatest Storyteller||Philip Harper||2017|
|7.||Salsa Tres’ Prado||Philip Harper||2017|
Soloist: Sara Llewellyn
|W. G. Lemon arr. Ray Woodfield||2019|
|9.||Tale of the Dragon||Paul Lovatt-Cooper||2019|
|Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau|
The band was placed 6th in the 1st Section at the Welsh Regional Championships 2020, held on February 29th at The Great Hall on Swansea University’s Bay Campus.
The set test piece was a new work by Welsh composer Tom Davoren titled ‘Legacy’, and the adjudicators were Alan Morrison and Jonathan Pippen.
Despite the low placing, the result has seen the band retain its 1st Section status for next year, following promotion back into the 1st Section in 2019.
Full results for the section are below.
|1||B. T. M. Band||Jeff Hutcherson||4|
|2||Tylorstown Band||Gary Davies||1|
|3||Deiniolen Silver Band||Lois Eifion||5|
|4||Lewis Merthyr Band||Craig Roberts||6|
|5||Parc & Dare Band||Lewis Wilkinson||7|
|6||Pontardulais Town Band||Paul Jenkins||2|
|7||Newport Borough Band||Robin Hackett||3|
Best Instrumentalist: Dylan Williams – Cornet (Deiniolen Silver Band)