Thirty Years At The Top!
One result in the brass band classes at last weekend’s Manx Music Festival serves to highlight the hard work and dedication of one particular Musical Director, Ian Clague MBE, to the week long annual festival.
The brass band test piece class traditionally followed a standard contest format, with a set test piece being played by the bands entered each year.
Dwindling entries led to the Guild Committee taking the bold step to change the format in 2009, allowing bands to choose their own test piece.
This decision was rewarded with renewed popularity and the contest now sees four or five bands regularly vying for honours each year.
However, for more than quarter of a century, and through all the changes, one Musical Director has stamped his mark on the history of the competition.
Last Sunday, Ian Clague MBE conducted Manx Concert Brass playing Eric Ball’s “Sunset Rhapsody” with a performance that adjudicator, Derek Southcott, said “sent shivers down his spine in a good way”!
This performance was a clear winner, being awarded 95 points, some 6 points clear of second placed Manx Youth Band, who played Edward Gregson\'s \"Variations On Laudate Dominum\", who were also conducted by Ian Clague MBE.
Amazingly, this was the 30th consecutive year that Ian has won the \"Crosbie Trophy\" with the Manx Youth Band, Manx Concert Brass or a combined group of players from both bands.
Achieving the top 2 places this year was the icing on the cake for Ian, who remarked \"he was over the moon with the results, it was a pleasure to conduct both bands and he was immensely proud of all the players\"