Two champions in a row for brass band

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CARNOUSTIE was again celebrating the success of its young musicians this week as yet another was awarded a prestigious prize.

On Sunday, trombonist Joe Walters (20), a member of the Carnoustie and District Youth Brass Band was named BBC Radio 2 Young Brass Player of the Year in Manchester at the Festival of Brass.

Joe took to the stage at the Royal Northern College of Music for the finals of the BBC competition with the pieces ‘Song for the Skies’ by Paul Lovatt-Cooper and his own arrangement of ‘James Brown in the Twilight Zone’ by Chris Brubeck.

Sitting on the judges’ panel were well-known figures from the brass world Richard Evans, Halle Orchestra tuba player Ewan Easton, composer Simon Dobbs and British Bandsman editor Kenneth Crookston.

Sunday’s winning performance will be broadcast in the near future on the BBC Radio 2 programme ‘Listen to the Band’ which runs on a Wednesday evening.

Joe’s success makes it the second consecutive year that a member of the Carnoustie and District Youth Brass Band has won the award.

Last year’s winner was tuba player Ross Knight, and according to the tradition of the competition as the existing winner Ross presented the trophy to his friend and fellow bandmate.

Michael Robertson, conductor of the Carnoustie and District Youth Brass Band and Joe’s brass teacher said: “I am so pleased for Joe as he has worked so hard over many years.

“Both Carnoustie and Arbroath Instrumental band would like to send our congratulations and best wishes to Joe and wish him the very best of luck as he continues to carve out a successful career for himself in the musical world.”

Joe, a former pupil of Carnoustie High School, is currently in his second year of study at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. His success will now see him play solo with the BBC Concert Orchestra.

As well as having several compositions published, he has recently been commissioned by the Scottish Brass Band Association to compose a piece for the European Brass Band Championships which will be held in Perth Concert Hall later this year.

Joe has also recently won an apprenticeship with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.

It is a good start to 2013 for the Carnoustie and District Youth Brass Band which will have a difficult task topping its success last year.

In 2012 the band regained the Scottish Youth title, became British champions, won the BBC Radio 2 British Youth Band of the Year and played at the Albert Hall.