On a chilly Wednesday evening in early February, a quiet corner of Wimbledon was warmed by the rousing tones of Putney & Wimbledon Brass Band.
In Dundonald Congregational Church they performed in front of a packed crowd in support of the Wimbledon & District Guide Dogs, with several of the latter in attendance. Exceptionally well behaved they were, too – perhaps hypnotised by the musical director’s shirt as he led the band through a varied programme, expertly compèred by trombonist Elin.
Along the way, the audience was introduced to a mysterious cornet-toting water nymph (Rusalka’s Song To The Moon), beguiled by lyrical flugelhorn and euphonium solos (Ashokan Farewell) and, finally, sent dancing away to a medley of ABBA’s hits. This thoroughly enjoyable evening also raised just shy of £400 for the Guide Dogs association.
Eat less chocolate; watch less TV; eat less bacon; stop drinking; eat less cheese. New Year’s Resolutions tend to be a list of things you enjoy, but you’re no longer allowed to do. Until about the 12th of January, that is…
So how about a New Year’s Resolution that you’ll want to keep up beyond January, that adds something fun, exciting and rewarding to your life?
At Putney & Wimbeldon Brass Band, we love nothing more than helping a lapsed brass player get back into playing; or providing a place for a developing player to join a group for the first time. And January is the perfect time…
Here’s a few reasons why joining us might be your best option to start off 2018 on a high note:
We’re more fun than going for a run; with a wide range of gigs and events already planned for 2018, your social media posts will be a lot more interesting than a series of RunKeeper stats.
We’re more sociable than a box set; as an established and thriving band, you’ll instantly have close to thirty new friends. Our welcoming attitude and an active social diary means “Netflix” will soon drop out of your vocabulary.
We’re warmer and drier than a swim in the Serpentine; with Christmas out of the way, brass banding is a strictly indoor activity until the summer!
We’re less competitive than Sunday League Football; there are no trials or auditions to get your place on our team. As long as you’re comfortable playing a brass instrument in a group environment, you’re in!
We’re less judgmental than a dieting club; no public weighing or body-shaming here. We have a supportive culture where we encourage and learn from each other. Our more experienced players love sharing their expertise to help you improve or get back into playing.
We’re cheaper than gym membership; as a member-run, not-for-profit group we have no overheads and keep subscriptions to an absolute minimum. Handy when that January pay-cheque seems so far away.
As 2017 draws to a close, Putney & Wimbledon Brass Band are reflecting on an incredible month spent spreading Chrstmas cheer to the residents of Wandsworth and Merton. We loved every single one of the 20+ engagements and busking sessions, with highlights including:
Inspiring the next generation of brass players at Floreat Wandsworth, Wimbledon Chase and High View Primary Schools.
Helping Putney Methodist Church raise over £400 for the Glass Door Homeless Charity.
Entertaining a very rowdy post-quiz crowd at the Prince of Wales with some “brass band carol karaoke!”
Performing for three camels in Putney and a donkey in Balham; all in the space of two hours!
Free mince pies and strudel from Morrison’s Wimbledon when playing outside in a very damp Christmas Market.
And, of course, appearing not once, not twice, but FIVE times on ITV, launching their Christmas competition alongside Andi Peters, live on Good Morning Britain and Lorraine.
As a new project in the area, we’ve been humbled by the way local community has welcomed and engaged with us, and look forward to providing the soundtrack to many more events in South West London throughout 2018.
Sun 17th Dec 7pm – Merry Quizmas, Prince of Wales, Putney SW15 2SP
Throughout the month, we’ll also be popping up at stations and town centres across the area, to cheer up weary commuters and stressed shoppers. Keep an eye on Twitter and Facebook to see where we’ll be and when!
A mere four weeks after our launch we’re overwhelmed by the response of the local community and the enthusiasm for a brass band in this part of South West London. We’re very excited to be supporting so many local events, and look forward to sharing a Christmas carol and a mulled wine with as many people as possible!
What do all good brass bands do as soon as fireworks night and Remembrance Day have passed? They get the Christmas music out, of course!
Whilst the rest of the country critique this year’s John Lewis advert and enjoy their first mulled wine, Putney & Wimbledon Brass Band is practicing for a very busy Christmas period. We already have over a dozen bookings for festive events across the boroughs of Merton and Wandsworth this December!
We’re currently finalising our schedule but keep an eye on our website, Facebook and Twitter for more details of where you can hear us play in the run up to Christmas.
In other news, Santa has visited us early and delivered some fantastic new players to our line-up, helping to fill our cornet and trombone sections. However, we don’t limit our numbers so if you fancy joining us in time to play a few carols this December, feel free to get in touch; the more the merrier!
We are very excited to announce that our first official engagement as Putney & Wimbledon Brass Band will be Wimbledon Park Fireworks night on Saturday 4 November. The first bonfire will be lit at 6.30pm, so wrap up warm and come see us play.