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Bega District Band celebrates 120 years with Canberra brass back up

Elka Wood 20 November 2019
Bega District Band plays in Ayres Walkway

Bega District Band plays in Ayres Walkway, Bega on Tuesday to advertise their upcoming concert. Photo: Elka Wood.

When Jane Woolacott moved back to the Bega Valley fourteen years ago and joined the Bega District Band, she was the only female and the only person under sixty.

“It was definitely declining then but we seem to be going through a really good phase now,” she says.

The band has seen its share of highs and lows since its inception in 1899 but this Saturday’s concert “Hits of the stage and screen,” at the Bega Civic Centre is sure to be a highlight.

“Canberra Brass will perform for half the concert and they are fantastic, a really top brass band,” Jane says “it’s also the first public performance of our Bega All-Ages Development [BAAD] Band.”

Musical director and band conductor Candy McVeity has been overseeing BAAD rehearsals with approximately 20 regular members.

“Candy also teaches at Bega Primary, so she’s encouraged lots of her kids to come along,” Jane explains.

Brass instruments are notoriously expensive, giving them a reputation as “private school toys,” but Jane reports that you can now buy a lightweight, plastic brass instrument like a trumpet for a fraction of the cost of the brass version.

“It’s not a bad sound, either,” Jane laughs “not quite as brassy but being lightweight, they’re perfect for kids and much easier to hold.”

“Hits of the stage and screen,” will feature guest vocals from Frankie J Holden and Michelle Pettigrove and will begin at 7 pm on Saturday, 23rd November at the Bega Valley Commemorative Civic Centre.

Tickets are $12, kids 15 and under FREE.

Book online at TryBooking.

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