2012 Cultural Olympiad Project for Brass Bands
Brass The Baton is an exciting new project for 2012 designed to increase participation in the Brass Band Music art form on an unprecedented scale never attempted before from a single event. It provides a unique opportunity for brass musicians, and conductors, of all ages, to perform a new music commission as part of a high profile, high quality, nationwide celebration of brass band music making for the 2012 Cultural Olympiad.
Brass The Baton is basically a relay race involving 5 conductor’s batons, each representing one of the 5 Olympic rings and coloured accordingly. Starting in Europe in May at the prestigious European Brass Band Championships each of the 5 batons will be passed by participating Brass Bands / Ensembles across the UK and Internationally, until they reach their final destination:- the London 2012 Festival in July.
All Brass Bands / Ensembles can participate
Brass Bands / Ensembles will be invited to take part and 5 unique routes will be mapped out for each baton before the start. One baton will be dedicated to be passed only by youth / training / beginner bands; another could be assigned to travel through Europe and possibly around the world.
The relay race will last for at least 10 weeks providing 350 potential performance days (i.e. 5 batons x 10 weeks of 7 days) where each Brass Band / Ensemble taking part will be encouraged to find the most innovative way of performing with, and passing on, one of the 5 conductor's baton.
A special piece of music will be commissioned entitled “Brass The Baton: Going The Distance”, it will comprise 5 parts that can be performed independently along the route of each baton. The world premiere performance of the complete piece will only occur when all 5 parts / batons / massed bands of brass musicians come together for the project finale during the London 2012 Festival in July.
London 2012 Inspire Mark
To date the creative concept has been developed by the British Federation of Brass Bands (BFBB) working in collaboration with Rambling Brass and they are extremely pleased to announce that the project has recently been granted the London 2012 Inspire Mark, the badge of the London 2012 Inspire programme which recognises exceptional and innovative projects inspired by the 2012 Games.
Seb Coe, Chair of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games said: ’We want to use the power of the Games to inspire change. The Inspire programme is recognising the work our partners all round the UK are doing to help us achieve this vision now – one year away from the start of the Games. I congratulate everyone involved in Brass The Baton for securing the Inspire mark and wish you every success with your work.’
Partnership & Collaboration
Other project partners across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are now being contacted to ensure that all brass bands throughout the UK have the opportunity to take part in Brass The Baton.
BFBB is also in discussion with the European Brass Band Association regarding the details of the launch event for the start of the relay at the 2012 European Brass Band Championships and with London based partners regarding the staging of the world premier of “Brass The Baton” during the London 2012 Festival.
Terry Luddington, BFBB Liaison Officer, stated “Brass The Baton is designed as a collaborative project where all partners and participants will be encouraged to contribute towards the shared goal of engaging as many brass band musicians, volunteers, audience members, children and young people as possible in order to leave a lasting legacy of increased participation in Brass Band music making for the future.
We would now like to hear from all Brass Bands / Brass Ensembles / Festivals / Contests / Venues / Conductors / Volunteers interested in getting involved in Brass The Baton. At this stage please just send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to record your interest and we’ll be in touch soon with more information.”