Alumnus to lead National Youth Brass Band of Wales
26 February 2016
School of Music alumnus Tom Davoren will be leading the
Youth Brass Band of Wales this year.
Repertoire will be linked by a celebration of Shakespeare 400 and the music of Welsh composer Mervyn Burtch who passed away in 2015. The Band will also be performing the world premiere of Tom’s new work for euphonium, as well as the Welsh premiere of his piece The Divinity of Hell.
It might only be February but 2016 has already been an incredibly busy year for Tom. The Divinity of Hell was premiered by the Fairey Band at the RNCM Festival last month and, shortly afterwards, Tom travelled to Washington for a performance with the President’s Own United States Marines Band. The Band performed the American premiere of Tom’s wind orchestra work Ascension, originally commissioned by the Central Band of the Royal Air Force and the Brass Band of Battle Creek.
There will be an opportunity for Cardiff audiences to hear Ascension in March when the Central Band of the Royal Air Force perform at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. This concert will also host the UK premiere of ‘Stillness’, Tom’s new work commissioned by a consortium including Ty Cerdd (for Burry Port Town Band), the Central Band of the Royal Air Force, University of Saskatchewan (Canada), University of Kansas, and Monclair State University (New Jersey, USA).
Discussing the piece, Tom said: “It is a commemoration of the Welsh story of Amelia Earhart’s first transatlantic crossing, which took place been Canada and Burry Port in West Wales in 1928. The piece is called ‘Stillness’, which is taken from a newspaper interview given by Earhart on her landing in Wales and the music incorporates elements of a recently rediscovered hymn tune, Burry Port, penned by prolific Welsh hymn composer John Roberts.
Tom completed his BMus in 2009 and MMus in Composition in 2011. His music has been premiered and commissioned by artists across the world including ‘The President’s Own’ United States Marine Band, Central Band of the Royal Air Force, Brass Band of Battle Creek, Cory Band, Philippe Schartz (Principal Trumpet BBC National Orchestra of Wales), Glenn Van Looy (international euphonium soloist) and Steven Mead (international euphonium soloist).
Image: Tom (far right) with British composer Peter Meechan and Dr Darrin Oehlerking, conductor at the University of Saskatchewan, following a world premiere in Canada.