Gidday folks, Pat Di Somma here – Wellington Brass Band’s principal bass-baritone player/chainsaw operator/verbal punching bag - giving you the inaugural update leading up the band’s imminent departure to England in September.
Team morale is soaring following the band’s quadruple A grade win in as many years, especially as a musical and psychological springboard to the dizzying heights of the British Open. Jack Bewley, the band’s associate principal baritone player described his feelings as such: “absolutely fizzing mate. I’m revelling in it.” That being said, our Supreme Leader and musical director David Bremner has emphasised the dangers of complacency, so we’re trying not to be too Gung Ho™ about it. Band rehearsals since the national contest have regularly drawn comparisons to any classic Kafka novel; enduring, somewhat laborious but rich in content and ultimately very satisfying.
No doubt my comrades will outline the various impending highlights of our voyage in the blogs to follow, so I will kick it off by cutting straight to the nitty-gritty.
The inevitable band curry:
Mark Davey – resident Welly Brass anti-hero and principal trombonist – maintains that the conception of the noble (and increasingly widespread) tradition of enjoying a curry as whole-band-social activity can be credited to the Wellington band; an audacious and potentially divisive claim at best. Nevertheless, Birmingham is colloquially known as the curry capital of Great Britain, and indoctrination or not, you can probably put your house on Wellington Brass visiting at least a few establishments of this nature…provided there are enough seats for the littler and angrier members of the band. What better way to simultaneously enjoy the culinary and musical traditions of our colonial overlords than with a classic communal curry leading up to a brass-band related event.
In all seriousness, the magnitude and significance of attending the British Open is truly beginning to sink in, and the level of organisation required for a trip of this scale is immense. The breakfast menu for our stay in Birmingham has already been finalised - a terrifying concept, especially considering some members of the band consistently struggle to recall what day of the week it is. As such, the British Open committee are doing an incredible job to make sure everything is tickety-boo.