|Thanks for your support!|
At the close of another busy summer season, everyone involved with HTB would like to thank all those who have supported us, if it wasn't for the generosity of everyone there would be no band
Following a busy summer concert season HTB immediately moved to contest mode and began preparations for the South West Brass Band Association Contest at the Riviera Centre in Torquay.
The contest, this year being held on Saturday 1st November features many top bands from the West of England region, and Helston, who are a nationally recognised 1st section band will be competing in the open section along with other 1st and championship section bands.
The section features a strong line-up of bands including fellow Cornish band Lanner and District under Stuart Chappell along with other West of England competitors Chalford, Hyde, Shrewton, South West Comms and Verwood Concert Brass bands.
The contest will be the first time that Musical Director Darren Hendy, who took over the band in May, will lead the band on a competitive stage and will also feature the HTB debut contest performances of Principal Cornet Jasmine Ryder-Pollard and Solo Cornet Jo Ryder-Pollard. Catriona Bell, the bands former Flugel Horn player has also made a welcome return to the band on 3rd Cornet for the contest.
HTB played at perhaps it's most important engagement of the year over the weekend - the wedding of Solo Horn Lisa Johns and her now-husband Matt.
The band were delighted to be involved in the ceremony for Lisa, who has been a member of HTB since childhood, and we wish them both every happiness in their life together.
Saturday 23rd August saw Helston Town Band present their 12th annual ‘Lismore Proms’ in the beautiful grounds of band president Michael Jay’s Lismore Gardens, and what a special evening it was.
The band began their performance with popular march Ravenswood, followed by the well-known Light Cavalry overture. HTB then featured rising star Sean Sjoholm playing the beautiful soprano solo L’inverno. A very special celebrity appearance by the nephew of operatic superstar Luciano Pavarotti - Garcalotti Pavarotti (Kevin Johns) performed the famous Nessum Dorma to huge applause by the 600 plus audience.
Mother and daughter singers Karen and Bromley Hurn were the band’s guest soloists this year and they delighted the crowds with a varied and entertaining programme. Compere for the evening was the ever-professional Bruce Taylor.
Helston also featured other ‘special guest’ soloists in the form of Tim (Jack Curnow) Jones (apparently the nephew of Tom Jones) playing and singing the hit song It’s Not Unusual, complete with goatee, loud shirt and hip thrusts. A blast from the past also made an appearance at the Proms, Laurel and Hardy (Paul Jenkins and Shawn Carter) took to the stage with a rousing rendition of Another Fine Mess.
A special highlight of the evening featured members of a local Pipe and Drum band performing the stirring Highland Cathedral along with the band.
The second half of the concert saw the band, joined by members of Helston Concert Brass, march through the beautiful gardens playing the Flora Dance.
The 2014 Proms was the first appearance of both new Principal Cornet Jasmine Ryder-Pollard and Musical Director Darren Hendy, who took over the baton in May and has made such an impact on the band with his drive, enthusiasm and determination.
A very special and truly unique moment in Cornish and English brass banding took place at this year’s Proms. Band veteran Russell Harvey, who joined the band in 1944, was presented with certificates and medals by the Cornish Brass Band Association and Brass Bands England in recognition of a truly incredible 70 years as a member of Helston Town Band. To put this in perspective, the next highest certificate that the CBBA have ever awarded is 63 years continuous service.
The band itself also paid tribute to Russell, with former MD Edward Ashton speaking about his professional and personal relationship with Russell. The band presented Russell with a silver salver and former band member Debbie Retallack also made a welcome appearance presenting Russell with a framed picture of him leading the band during the 7 o’clock dance of this year’s Flora Day and a bottle of Spingo!
The band would like to sincerely congratulate Russell on this incredible achievement… next target – 70 Flora Days?
The evening concluded with traditional Proms Anthems – Jerusalem, Fantasia on British Sea Songs, Pomp and Circumstance, and the Cornish anthem Trelawney, giving the audience the opportunity to wave their flags and sing their hearts out! The atmosphere was fantastic, with ‘Rule Britannia’ being heard across the night air on the other side of Helston.
To put on a night such as this requires a huge amount of work from a large number of people, and the band would like to thank everyone who contributed in any shape or form.
This year marked a very special Lismore Proms for Helston Town Band.
Not only did the band perform another evening of top entertainment, in what is one of its most popular events of the year, but also paid tribute to its longest - serving member, veteran Cornet player, Russell Harvey.
Former Postal Officer Russell, 79, is marking his 70th year as a loyal member of Helston Town Band, having joined towards the end of the war, in 1944. In recognition of this unparalleled achievement, he was presented with certificates and medals by the Chairman of Cornwall Brass Band Association, Trevor Bedding. He also received a special recognition from Brass Bands England.
The band itself also paid tribute to Russell, with long- serving former Musical Director, Edward Ashton, himself first associated with the band in the 1940s, speaking about his lifelong professional and personal relationship with Russell, who is a shining example to all bandsmen.
The band presented Russell with a silver salver and former playing colleague, Debbie Retallick, also made a welcome appearance, presenting Russell with a framed picture of him leading the band during the 7 o'clock dance on this year's Flora Day.
In recognition of the whole family’s support, Russell’s wife, Veronica was presented with a bouquet. For the Harvey family, Helston Town Band has become part of their life. Their son, Ian, is also a lifelong band member and was Principal Cornet for over 30 years, whilst his brother Malcolm is a former player. Russell’s brother, John, was a loyal band member for 40 years.
As the summer season begins to wind down (yes already.. it will be September soon!) the band comes off the back of a busy period of engagements, and all attention now focuses on the Annual Lismore Proms in four days’ time.
The Proms, as already highlighted in our feature tab above, has become a staple event in the band calendar and is eagerly anticipated by all involved.
Our MD Darren, making his debut Proms appearance as Musical Director, has been busily preparing a programme for the evening. The music will be varied, as usual; there are bound to be one or two surprises in amongst the traditional favourite brass band fanfare, marches and hymns and the traditional Jerusalem, the rousing Land of Hope and Glory and ever- popular Trelawny at the finish. …..there may even be one ‘star’ making a return after a nearly eight year absence!
Gates will open at 6pm. The Helston Concert Brass, with their MD Ian Edwards, will be the ‘warm up act,’ prior to the official start, at 7pm.
This year sees the return of wonderful local soloists, Mezzo Soprano, Karen Hurn and her daughter, Bromley, Soprano. The band is delighted to welcome both ladies to the Proms.
The evening will again be compered by Bruce Taylor.
The band have undergone a transformation with Darren at the helm, and have welcomed quality signings into the ranks, all of whom we hope enjoy their first Proms experience.
Tickets are still available and the weather forecast is looking good, so there is no excuse not to get your ticket now!