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The Scottish Brass Band Association (SBBA) and the European Brass Band Association (EBBA) have announced that a performance by the Norwegian champion band, Eikanger-Bjørsvik Musikklag, will precede the new European Youth Brass Band Contest, which will take place in Perth Concert Hall on Sunday 4 May.
SBBA Development Manager Andrew Duncan commented: "It is with great pleasure that we can announce the opening concert of the European Youth Brass Band Contest. This will combine a farewell concert for the 2014 European Youth Brass Band under Musical Director Russell Gray and the outstanding Eikanger-Bjørsvik Musikklag, a former European champion and one of the most innovative and exciting combinations in the world of brass bands."
Andrew Duncan continued: "Eikanger-Bjørsvik always delivers a great programme and we are sure that the prospect of hearing the 2013 European Championship runner-up will help us to attract a capacity audience for the new European Youth Brass Band Contest, which will commence immediately after the concert."
Speaking on behalf of Eikanger-Bjørsvik, Band Manager Viggo Bjørge said: "We had a great experience last year, when we closed the championship with a joint concert with Cory Band at the Town Square in Oslo. When we heard that our local youth band would take part in the new European Youth Brass Band Contest we contacted the Scottish organisers to see if we could be of any assistance in supporting the event. We learned from the TV docu-soap series we made last year that the young players really enjoyed having a peek inside the big bands' engine rooms, so we aim to give them that, not by playing heavy testpieces, but by attempting to bring the house down with an entertaining programme that shows that light music can be as serious and hard as the test-pieces."
EBBA General Secretary Carsten Hering Nielsen is very pleased that Eikanger will support the event in this way. "I am sure it will bring in a great crowd for both the concert and the contest later in the afternoon. Furthermore we have been working on a good way to give the European Youth Brass Band of 2014 a proper opportunity to present themselves in a farewell concert. This seems to be solved elegantly by the local organising committee in arranging this opening concert as the culmination of a week of hard work for the EYBB that will also include the soloist final's gala concert, the opening ceremony and a short programme in Saturday evening's grand gala concert."