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VoG Festival & Tredegar Band launch emerging composer scheme

Vale of Glamorgan Festival with Tredegar Town Band Launch of commissioning process for emerging composers The Vale of Glamorgan Festival and Tredegar Town Band have today announced their collaboration on a new commissioning process for emerging composers. Aspiring music makers of any age, from all around Wales, are invited to engage in this process with the goal of creating new music for the world famous brass band.

The process aims to create new work that speak directly to the experience of people who have grown and lived in disadvantaged and de-industrialised Wales. The project also hopes to seek out hidden, ignored or missed Welsh talent, from both traditional and non-traditional musical backgrounds.

“The Festival is delighted to see the widespread acclaim enjoyed by the Tredegar Town Band following their two performances at the BBC Proms. In this context it is especially appropriate that this new project will further the band’s work through the commissioning of a new work by outstanding young composer David Roche. David Roche grew up and had his first musical experiences playing in the Junior Band and during the composition of the new piece he will also mentor the creation of works by new and unheard voices from the South Wales Valleys"

John Metcalf, Vale of Glamorgan Festival Director

Six music creators will be chosen from a panel of new music industry professionals to undertake a period of development and mentoring from critically acclaimed young composer David John Roche; himself born and raised in Tredegar and a past member of the Festival’s young composer’s studio (the “PRCS”). This one-to-one mentoring and support process, and the wealth of experience and skill Roche will bring to the project, will give emerging and nontraditional music makers the confidence and knowledge of how to turn their ideas and sounds into notated works with the potential to be performed by the Band.

I would never have learned to play or read music without the free education I received from Tredegar Town Band as a child. I remember the day my mother took me to the band room to sign up. I was given a silver cornet (which I still have but promise to return), shown a few notes, and told to practice diligently – within a month or so I was playing in concerts in the band hall! I also wrote my first piece of music, but it’s suspiciously similar to Acapulco Bay (which was the only thing I could play at the time).
The band's community links were always very strong and this is something that is still important to me, and a large part of what excites me about this incredible project with the Vale of Glamorgan Festival. The abilities I had gained with the band as a child were essential and formed the basis of what would become my career – I hope I can do something to help extend similar opportunities to those looking to develop their musical abilities today. This is something a thriving musical culture needs and I couldn’t have been a musician without it. As someone born and raised in Tredegar, to know that there was an exceptional, top-tier, internationally renowned ensemble from your area was inspiring. The town band is a source of enormous pride and, although their spectacular musical and technical abilities are super exciting, I am most excited about writing something substantial for an ensemble based in Tredegar. It’s a return home for me, and I want to write something showstopping, enormous, and inspiring.

David John Roche

Supported by the Arts Council of Wales and Tŷ Cerdd, The project will culminate with performances by Tredegar Town Band during the Vale of Glamorgan Festival 2023, which will also include a rare performance of Bramwell Tovey’s “Nine Daies Wonder” and the world premiere of a new work by Roche himself, specifically commissioned by the Vale of Glamorgan Festival. Interested in getting involved? The Team is particularly interested in hearing from: - Aspiring music makers and composers, based in Wales, from traditional and non-traditional backgrounds - Music teachers from the secondary schools in Wales who would like to encourage composition skills and experiences within their cohorts - Local LEAs and Music Services who would like to promote the process throughout their networks and communities. A launch session will be recorded and made fully available, along with resource materials, to enable all aspiring composers to have an opportunity to create a work the Band.

Please contact if you would like to hear more and access these materials. Full details of all events can be found on the Vale of Glamorgan Festivals

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