After an action packed year as Resident Conductor of the Brighouse & Rastrick Band, Leigh Baker is to move on to become Musical Director of Hepworth Band. Although the move will officially take place in January, Leigh will be fronting Hepworth at a number of seasonal concerts while continuing to lead Brighouse in their busy Christmas calendar.
Leigh said: “I’ve had an amazing year at Brighouse with so many highlights, and I would like to thank the band for some very special moments. The Whit Friday Saddleworth win, a Brass in Concert podium spot, and some truly high profile concerts will remain musical highlights for me. I am also excited about the imminent release of the ‘Baker’s Dozen’ CD that the band recorded earlier in the year.
“The Hepworth post is a chance for me to really spread my wings though, and I will take responsibility for all contest and concert performances as well as continuing to build on the band’s recent excellent run of form. It’s an exciting time for the band and it was just too good an opportunity for me to turn down.”
Brighouse & Rastrick band manager Alan Morrison said: “B&R are really sorry to lose the services of Leigh as Resident Conductor but recognise the great work he has done for us this year and accept that his new appointment is a superb opportunity to further his career in several directions.
“We hope it will not be the last association Leigh has with his beloved purple and gold. We look forward to playing his new arrangements and still working with him regularly. Everyone at B&R wishes Leigh every success and hopes his new relationship with Hepworth Band will prove to be very successful.”
Hepworth Band spokesman Dave Horan added: “We’re delighted that Leigh has accepted the position of Musical Director with Hepworth. It feels to be the perfect match as we look to build on the solid foundations laid by Mark Peacock. We’d like to thank Mark for his work with the band over the last two years and we wish him every success as he leads the Longridge Band into the Championship section.
“We’re really looking forward to the new year and to working with Leigh as the band’s new Musical Director.”
The countdown to the festive season begins for the Hepworth Band with a concert at Ackworth School on Sunday December 4 in support of the Parkinson’s UK Charity when the band will be joined by choirs from Ackworth School and Wakefield Grammar School Foundation.
The entertainment gets under way at 6.30pm with tickets £6.00, children under 16 free, available from Ackworth School (01977 611401), Hepworth Band (07885 251454, email: email@example.com) and Parkinson’s UK (020 79639330, email firstname.lastname@example.org)
On Friday December 9 at 7.30pm the band makes a welcome return to Thornhill Parish Church, Dewsbury for a seasonal concert with the Major Minors and Cantabile Choirs, and soprano soloist Bethany Rosamond. Tickets, £7.00, are available from the Church (01924 507782).
Tickets, £8.00 including refreshments, are available from the Butchers Arms, Hepworth; Christ Church New Mill; Wm. Sykes & Son Estate Agents Holmfirth, New Mill Co-op and the Band (07885 251454).
Members of the band will be playing at the traditional Service of Lessons and Carols at Hepworth Church, at 4pm on Sunday, December 18, and on Christmas Eve at 7.00pm it’s the Carol Service in Hepworth Village. On Christmas Day, the players will be out carolling around the village from 9.00pm.
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The Band was formed in the village of Hepworth, near Holmfirth, in 1882, making it one of the oldest brass bands in the country. Today, it competes in the Championship Section, making it one of the best bands in the UK.
It has had a proud contesting tradition since its founding, and in recent years, has won a string of prestigious prizes. At the same time, it runs its own concert series every year, supports local charities and other events, including the famous Hepworth Feast, and appears at other venues across the U.K. throughout the year.
The Band relies on generous donations from a number of companies, both national and local, for its continued existence. Since the beginning it has also relied heavily on subscriptions raised from local people, and this tradition continues today.
All Rights Reserved. Copyright © 2008-2016 Hepworth Band. The Hepworth Silver Prize Band is a charity registered in England and Wales, No. 1161654.