Comings and Goings at Russell Street

The Lochgelly Band are pleased to announce the appointment of Paul Drury as resident conductor. Paul received his early musical education at school and at his local Salvation Army Citadel. Starting on cornet at age 6, Paul gradually worked his way through the band, arriving at the tuba by age 14. Paul studied tuba with Tony Swainson of the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra for four years, becoming an Associate of the Royal College of Music aged 17 (one of the youngest tubists to achieve this award). He was also principal tuba of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and principal euphonium of the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland. Whilst still at school Paul performed as a concerto soloist with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra. Paul is becoming increasingly well known as a composer and arranger and has had over a dozen compositions published by the Salvation Army. Paul has been invited to compose works for the New York Staff Band, the Household Troops Band, Govan Citadel Band and Edinburgh Gorgie Band. In addition his music has been recorded by a number of brass and choral groups and he was the composer of the title track on the 2004 recording by the International Staff Band of the Salvation Army. In 2003 Paul was the winner of the inaugural Longridge Composers' Forum, and his circus march 'Jubilee' won the Best March Prize for the Sellers International Band at the 2004 Brass in Concert contest at Spennymoor. In November 2004, Paul was delighted to accept the post of Composer in Residence of Unison Kinneil Band. In April 2005, Paul was also appointed Resident Conductor of Unison Kinneil Band.

In addition to a new conductor the band are pleased to announce a trio of further signings to strengthen the ranks. Joining us on solo trombone is Martyn Chapman. Martyn is currently principal trombone with the band of HM Royal Marines based in Rosyth and takes up the chair vacated by his comrade Richard Sharp, now resident in Portsmouth. We look forward to benefitting from Martyns contribution in the years ahead.

Joining the band on euphonium is Tom Smith. Tom is one of the most well known euphonium players in Fife and the band are pleased to have captured the signature of such an experienced player. This will be Toms second stint with the band, having previously been a member in the late 90's. Since that time Tom has been playing solo euphonium with the Tullis Russell Mills band and has even found time to settle down with a wife and child. We are delighted to welcome Tom back to the band to fill what has been a problem chair for us for quite some time and we look forward to the contribution he will make in the challenges that lie ahead.

Arriving to strengthen the cornet section is Alec Wilson. Alec will be taking up a position on the front row and will be a welcome addition to the rank. Alec has been playing cornet for many years and is a former principal cornet with Tullis Russell Mills band as well as most recently having been on the front row at Fife Champions Kingdom Brass. That experience will now be put to good use in the bands busy programme to the end of the year which includes the Fife Championships, Borders Entertainment and Scottish Challenge Shield contests.

Amidst all of these signings the band also say farewell to Irene Carstairs. Irene has been a stalwart on percussion for the band throughout our recent years of success. Irene is leaving to rejoin her friend Aileen Russell at the Tullis Russell Mills band. The Lochgelly band would like to thank Irene for her contribution throughout the last seven years and wish her well for the future.

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