Well, it's the final blog of our series, and as always the final say goes to the conductor (sshh Kezza).
I am Dave Bremner, the bands music director, and if you believe past blogs, I am the tyrannical dictator who picks constantly on Mark Davey and Tom Baker (some of this may be true).
The tour has come to an end, but it only feels like yesterday we were getting off the plane in Manchester ready for the challenge of our lives.
10 days later we disperse as a group, feeling very proud and satisfied of the week in the UK and our performance on Saturday.
There is always an unwritten rule about trips abroad 'what goes on tour, stays on tour' but I can tell you a few things about our week over here, as most of the band will be on a plane when this is posted and will have no rebuttal.
Let's start with a few awards...
The Mother Theresa award for most conscientious on tour goes to - Jack Beweley - no brainer really.
The Salvador Dali award for art installation goes to - Callum Mallet for redecorating his bathroom.
The David Di Somma award for best media goes to - Pat Di Somma for his blog - absolutely brilliant!
The Dumb and Dumber award for most forgetful goes to - Toby Pringle - Well done Toby, you pretty much forgot everything on this tour - hope the monkeys got back ok
The Blanket Man award for the person taking only one set of clothing for the whole tour goes to - Mark Davey - God help the person sitting next to him on the flight home...
The Stevie Wonder award for the person thinking they didn't need music on this tour goes to - James Sutherland - forgot his music and was seen still furiously cutting and pasting the night before the Open.
And the The Father Ted award for public speaking - Luke Spence - shocker dude.
In all seriousness though, for those of you that have never been to the Open, it's hard to put into words the emotion and hype of the day. It really is the most incredible day in banding. From the draw through to getting on stage, and the performance, it's a day I will never forget.
Finally, I would like to address the band directly.
Music is about people, and it's about the experience of making music with those people. You have been wonderful ambassadors for the arts in NZ - humble, hardworking, and proud. I will never forget that performance, for me it was a moment I didn't want to end, being on that stage with my friends and hearing the sound you filled the hall with made me a very proud kiwi and Wellington bandy.
Be proud of the hard work you put in, you are all champions in my book.
We were so lucky to have the most wonderful support from our touring party. Family and friends that came to be part of this tour, and made us feel at home. To see you all at the end of the performance standing with your kiwi flags was a moment that makes us realise how powerful music can be, and how lucky we are to have this opportunity.
Thank you to all that have supported the band over the past year, and thanks to those who have read these blogs. We have loved writing them and hope you have enjoyed them.
It's onwards and upwards for Wellington Brass, we are fizzing to get home and into the next contest... In the words of Pat Di Somma (aka Puggs) "mate, there were some big rig bands over here, but we stepped up. Represent Welly! Wait, was there a bass trombone solo award?"
Thanks for all your support, we had a blast. I took a few selfies for you all.