THIS year’s Hebden Bridge Heritage Weekend will have an international flavour as its appeal continues to spread.
Trombone virtuoso Nick Hudson will fly in from Abu Dhabi to be the special guest soloist at Hebden Bridge Brass Band’s gala concert at the Picture House on Saturday June 18.
It is a major coup for the band as Nick, who works as a brass instructor to a number of academies in the United Arab Emirates, rarely performs in the United Kingdom.
Hebden Bridge Brass Band chairman Steve Gardner, who played in the same band as Nick when they were youngsters, is delighted that a musician of such a high calibre will be performing with the band.
“The event is now in its fourth year and it’s still able to attract soloists of an extremely high standard,” Steve said. “People want to come and play with the band.”
The following day, Sunday June 19, will see the march and hymn tune contest take place in Hebden Bridge town centre. Bands will perform a march while processing along Bridge Gate before forming up in St George’s Square to play a hymn tune and another march
There may not be as many bands taking part this year as, due to Easter being late in the year, the traditional Whit Friday march contest falls the Friday before the heritage weekend, meaning some bands are unable to commit to both events.
Despite decreased numbers, Steve says it should still be a good afternoon of brass music.
“We are expecting people from far and wide,” he said. “We are hoping that we can rely on good weather again because we have been lucky so far and we hope that continues.”
The gala concert will be attended by Martin Mortimer, son of famous brass musician and conductor Harry Mortimer.
“It’s our first one in the championship section so it’s an opportunity for the people of Hebden Bridge to come and see the band,” Steve said.
He thanked Hebden Royd Town Council for its generous support.
Tickets for the concert, which starts at 7pm, are available from Hebden Bridge Tourist Information Centre, Pot Stop or by calling Steve Gardner on 07813 110126.