Images of the Millennium - Full 2 Band Version

This work was commissioned by Richard Evans for the JJB Leyland Band, to be performed during the year 2000. The requirement was for a Second Band to be included, possible of a lower standard. Richard Evansí concept envisaged a strong educational element.

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Richard Evans' request was that the work should mirror aspects of the history of banding while also looking forward.

1. FANFARE. In this movement the work is introduced.

2. TOCCATA: CONTEST DAY. The gathering together of players and audience for a contest day is treated in a busy, sometimes jazzy manner.

3. PASTORALE: 'A GREEN AND PLEASANT LAND'. Looking back to the third and fourth decades of the nineteenth century and the rapid birth of brass bands and banding, this short Intermezzo invokes the popular picture postcard view of the past. Images of warfare appear briefly as a reminiscence of Britain's continuing military domination of the world, with Trafalgar and Waterloo still echoing on the horizon.

4. MUSIC FOR A SILENT FILM: AN OLD MAN REMEMBERS PETERLOO. The reality of 'England's green and pleasant land' was somewhat different. On August 19th 1819 the Stalybridge Band was playing at a political meeting in St Peter's Fields in Manchester, later to become the site of the Free Trade Hall. The local Magistrate, sent in the cavalry. Shots were fired into the crowd, 11 people were killed and 500 injured. I present the scenes as follows

the holiday crowd in St Peter's Field entertained by the Band

the unprovoked attack by the militia

the flight from St Peter's Field

the funeral wake

the lament

5. SCHERZO: THE CRYSTAL PALACE. Only a few decades later brass bands were regular visitors to the greatest concert halls in the country. I see the Bands and their followers descending on London in trains and charabancs.

6. DREAM-NOCTURNE. As if in a trance, an unending musical line is passed around the ensemble to celebrate the players who possessed, and still possess, the sound and phrasing to enthrall the listener.

7. ODYSSEY. The way forward now beckons. The music passes through conflict, struggle and turmoil on its way to release, resolution and finally to triumph.