The EBBA Music Commission has chosen two British works as the set tests for the European Youth Brass Band Championships.
Bands in the Development Section will include Philip Sparke’s Valerius Variations in their programmes. Dutch composer, artist and poet Adriaen Valerius is mostly remembered today for his collection of 79 songs for voice and lute or cittern, published posthumously in 1626. Philip Sparke has taken one melody from this collection that tells of the War of Independence with Spain. The beautiful slow melody is followed by a series of lively variations to form an extremely entertaining piece that will bring great joy to all who perform and listen to it. Valerius Variations has proved a popular choice for youth and 4th Section contests.
Premier Section bands will tackle Michael Ball’s colourful Chaucer’s Tunes. Chair of the EBBA Music Commission, Paul Hindmarsh, comments: “Michael’s piece was originally prepared for the top section of the National Youth Championships of Great Britain 20 years ago and it has been chosen for youth and adult competitions a number of times since. They are both based on traditional tunes with links to a number of European countries. We hope the bands enjoy preparing and playing them.”
The 2018 European Youth Brass Band Contest takes place on Sunday 6 May.