Brass bands far from 'brassed off' as they are chosen to star in Octagon show (From This Is Lancashire)
Brass bands far from 'brassed off' as they are chosen to star in Octagon show
TALENTED musicians from three brass bands will tread the boards of the Octagon Theatre for a sell-out show — after responding to the trumpet call for players.
Wingates Band, based in Westhoughton, Eagley Band and the Blackburn and Darwen Band have signed up to play the roles of the musicians in the upcoming production of Brassed Off.
Each of the groups will put 16 players on alternating nights, with the award winning Wingates kicking off the show at opening night on Thursday, May 15.
Lisa O’Neill-Rogan, associate director of the Octagon, said she was delighted to have three local bands set to perform, who got together for the first time on Saturday.
She added: “We have had community members involved in shows before, but I think this is the largest thing we have ever done in terms of numbers of the community “It has been brilliant, and it’s great working with people who are more excited than we are about the show.”
The play captures the tale of a colliery brass band in 1992, where miners are on strike and the musicians are about to go their separate ways — before a talented flugelhorn player called Gloria shows up.
President of Wingates Band David Kaye said their involvement in Brassed Off capped off an amazing few weeks of success, after the band celebrated winning the Senior Cup at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens.
He added: “We’re still on cloud nine from our success, but we’ve not got a lot of time wallow in it.
“We thought performing at The Octagon was too good an opportunity to miss — not least because the competition the band in the play competed in is one Wingates has won four times in its history.”
Tina Banks, baritone horn musician in Eagley Band, said all the group were looking forward to testing their acting skills when rehearsals start next week.
She added: “This will be one of the largest audiences we have ever performed for, usually we perform in small halls or park gigs.
“We’re just looking forward to the whole thing, not least working with the actors and the Octagon stage crew.”
Cornet musician and treasurer of the Blackburn and Darwin band Alan Thomas said it was the first time the group had taken part in anything like this.
He added: “The music in the show is traditional brass bands music so we’re more concerned about the acting — although I think we’ll do ok in the drunken scenes.”
Brassed Out runs from Thursday, May 15 until Saturday, June 14.
Tickets are sold out.
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