Bill Shaw Solo Contest Details

This year will see the holding of the fifth annual Bill Shaw Memorial Slow Melody Contest. The act that this is the fifth contest as always brings mixed emotions to the band. The joy as we see the success of the contest as it grows from year to year, but overwhelmingly the sadness as we remember Bill.

For over 40 years Bill Shaw was a member of Lochgelly Band. Although he only ever registered for Lochgelly, Bill played and conducted as a guest for many bands. Bill also was committed to the brass band movement and over the years was involved and worked with various organisations especially FCBA and SBBA. This involvement made him a well known face around the local, national and even international events. Billís loyalty was always to The Lochgelly Band and a number of players who will compete this year benefited not only from Billís warm friendship but also the vast experience he gained through his time playing.

Bill always felt that solo contests were heavily biased towards very technically competent players, playing difficult pieces and did not accommodate players who played simpler pieces with feeling. He always said he would like to run a solo contest for slow melody pieces only. After Billís death in March 2002 the band, in accordance with this wish held the first Bill Shaw Memorial Slow Melody Contest in 2003 with the first contest being held on March 30th of that year. The contest is held in two sections; a junior section for players aged under 17 on the day of the contest, and an open section.

The winner of the open event is awarded the Bill Shaw Memorial Trophy, donated by Mr & Mrs Hershaw as well as a cash prize of £50. The winner of the junior event is awarded the Bill Shaw Solo Trophy, donated by Pauline Robertson and a £25 cash prize. In this years contest there will also be a new trophy for the best placed Lochgelly player in the senior section.

This years adjudicator will be the respected brass band composer / arranger Bruce Fraser. As a conductor he has been conducting brass bands, choirs and wind bands for over twenty years. Bruce currently conducts the City of Discovery Brass Band, but had a long association with the Lochgelly Band in the mid nineties. As an adjudicator he has appeared at many Music Festivals, Brass Band Competitions and Wind Band Festivals throughout the country. He recently was President of the jury at a Wind Band Festival in Italy. Until he recently retired Bruce was head of music at Buckhaven High School in Fife, a large comprehensive school with a busy rehearsal schedule for Orchestras, Bands, Ensembles and Choirs. He is also a member of the of National Panel of Adjudicators

The soloist will this year again be accompanied by Susan Gormley. Susan was born and bred in Fife, educated at Kirkcaldy High School and Edinburgh University, graduating with a B.Mus. She has always been involved in Fife music making, having been Musical Director for Kirkcaldy Gilbert and Sullivan Society for several years in the 1980s as well as playing violin in Fife Sinfonia. As an experienced accompanist she has worked with both instrumentalists and singers (many of whom competed at the Fife Festival of Music) and has been the accompanist for Ensemble since 1984. She is currently teaching music in Glenrothes and she lives in Lochgelly with her husband and two teenage daughters.

Entry forms can be obtained through the bands website at http://www.lochgellyband.com/solo_contest_entry.pdf or from the band secretary Mrs Stella McCormack, 25 Gagarin Way, Lumphinnans, Fife, KY4 9HW. Closing dates for entries will be 15th April 2007. In case of a large entry the band reserve the right to limit entries and to allocate entries on a first come first served basis.

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