Toad Lane Concerts: Rosamund Brass Quartet

Date published: 17 March 2024

The Rosamund Brass Quartet, all fourth-year students from the Royal Northern College of Music, and already seasoned players in the world of brass, truly brightened up the acoustic of St Mary in the Baum with sensational sounds.

Award-winning Seb Williman (cornet and trumpet) has played for Grimethorpe and Fairey Band and as principal cornet for Carlton Main. Adam Hofland-Ward (cornet) has already occupied principal seats such as soprano cornet for Grimethorpe and the Rothwell Temperance Bands, and Flugel for the Hepworth Band. Georgia Woodhead (horn) is from Rochdale and is currently solo horn for the Hepworth Band. Alex Barron (euphonium) has been principal euphonium of the National Youth Brass Band, a player with Grimethorpe, and The Halle Orchestra and Gary Clarke Theatre Company.

This all-star line-up began with Denis Wright’s Romantica, quickly establishing the Rosamund Brass style of individual brilliance combined with refined ensemble playing. Adam Gorb’s short and snappy contemporary piece, Quicksilver, contrasted with Greig’s At the Cradle (arr. Barron) with magical timbres of soft legato playing. Childs toe-tapping version of Tiger Street Rag was a real hootenanny.

A Simple Reel featured beautiful solo phrasing of Simple Gifts into an up-tempo variation. Sullivan’s choral piece The Long Day Closes, again sensitively arranged by Barron, was followed by that real tour de force for brass quartet that takes no prisoners - Joseph Horovitz’s Variation on a theme of Paganini.

An encore piece was demanded by sustained applause, and granted with A Closer Walk with Thee, with shades of Swannee River and trad jazz.

The Queen’s Award-winning Toad Lane Concerts are every Wednesday at 12.30pm at the Grade 1 listed St Mary in the Baum, Toad Lane, Rochdale, OL16 1DZ. Entrance fee is £6. No refreshments. Contact 01706 648872 for further information.

To see details of forthcoming Toad Lane Concerts, click here.

Dr Joe Dawson

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