Sheffield band enjoys success in international competition after uniting musicians across city

Celebrations are in store for a group of Sheffield musicians following their success at an international competition.

Monday, 14th June 2021, 8:26 am
Steel City Brass.

Steel City Brass, which was formed specially to give local players the chance to compete in the event, placed in the top 30 out of hundreds of bands entered.

Gemma Grayson, spokesman for Steel City Brass, said she believes the group made Sheffield proud with their success at Foden’s Online Whit Friday contest, at which their tough competition included the world’s number one ranked band.

The group also helped to unite musicians from around Sheffield, with players from all of the city’s bands, as well as anyone else keen to get involved, invited to participate in the special event.

Steel City Brass.

Ms Grayson said: “The response to our ‘little idea’ from the wonderful brass banding community in Sheffield was overwhelming. Never did we think we’d have such enthusiasm.”

The final performance included a grand total of 45 musicians, including players from ten different bands and orchestras based in the city, and with participants ranging in age from 12 to 85, Steel City Brass united a whole host of musical talents.

By coordinating the entry for the online competition, the organisers also gave Sheffield’s players a fun chance to collaborate with each other following a year of disrupted performances because of COVID-19.

To account for social distancing guidelines, the players rehearsed online before filming separate recordings which were then compiled into one video.

Steel City Brass.

The arduous task of editing the 45 tracks was given to Richard Windle, the Musical Director for Woodhouse Prize Band, who helped organise Steel City Brass.

Mr Windle said: “Prior to the pandemic, I never imagined I would be spending hours on end composing and arranging music for virtual performances, let alone editing and making videos to be shared internationally.”

Despite the unusual circumstances, thousands of viewers joined in to watch the two-day competition and the 119 groups involved, which turned out in full force, with all trumpets blazing.

Speaking of Steel City Brass’ involvement, Ms Grayson added: “This track is something all of those involved should be very proud of. We’re a lucky bunch here in Sheffield.”

The group’s performance, Senator, can be viewed here.

(link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7RnVcKIoC20)