2015 Tour to Europe


Excerpt from ABC News on the 30th June 2015

Tasmania’s Derwent Valley Concert Band cleans up at European championships

PHOTO: The Derwent Valley Concert Band has won the European Open Band Competition in the March Standstill section in Rastede, Germany. (Supplied: R.P. Broughton)

A Tasmanian concert band is on top of the world after winning the European Open Band Championships in Germany.

The Derwent Valley Concert Band also won for best onstage performance, best drum major and best conductor.

The band has had some success at the competition in previous years.

Musical director Layton Hodgetts told 936 ABC Hobart the awards were unexpected.

“It’s been just an amazing, electrifying weekend, and the band has just, there’s no-one more surprised,” he said.

“We are still absorbing the reality of the result.”

The band narrowly beat previous champions, German groups Musikverein Ruhle and third-placed Sonderborg Garden, in the concert category.

Mr Hodgetts said there were 18 nations represented at the competition including another group from Australia.

“They came from as far afield as Brazil, Colombia, Thailand, Malaysia and many, many bands from Europe of course,” he said.

The group’s drummer, Chris Rice, was individually recognised with a gold medal for his performance.

“He was the top scoring drum major at the event” Mr Hodgetts said.

The band’s conductor, Lyell McDermott, was also recognised for his work winning a gold medal for his performance with the baton.

Mr Hodgetts said it was an extremely successful performance.

“We couldn’t really understand all the announcements so we weren’t quite sure whether we missed out on the awards,” he said.

“They were obviously leaving the biggest until last.”

The musicians will not be heading home immediately as they head to Denmark for the world championships.

The band has previously played at the Royal Danish Wedding of Mary and Frederick, in Copenhagen, Denmark.

PHOTO: PHOTO: The Derwent Valley Concert Band performs at a farewell recital at the UTAS Stanley Bradbury Theatre before leaving for Germany. (Supplied: Derwent Valley Concert Band inc)