Staff Band at Haaglanden Annual Music Festival

The Amsterdam Staff Band (Bandmaster Olaf Ritman) was in The Hague, the residence of the King and Queen of the Netherlands, on the weekend of 23 – 24 November 2013 as part of the Haaglanden Annual Music Festival. The festival also featured the Haaglanden Citadel Band (conducted by Rein Quint and Robbert Marseille), Haaglanden Citadel Songsters (conducted by Ellen Scholten) and Haaglanden Praise Band (led by Marco Jansen).

The weekend began on Saturday afternoon, with the Staff Band and the Citadel Band forming one large group to march through the center of town.

The Saturday evening concert began with the Staff Band on the balcony of the corps hall, playing “Daar komen in de verte de Heilssoldaatjes aan” (“I see the Salvationists coming, already from a long distance”). This is an old Dutch (?) Salvation Army song, arranged as a brass band piece. While this was played the Citadel Band entered the hall. Halfway through, the Citadel Band began playing as the Staff Band ended, quite a nice effect.

The Staff Band was “on duty” for the second half and presented an interesting program with some Dutch premieres. In particular, the soloists were in top form. Flügelhorn soloist Menno van der Woude thrilled the audience with Children of Sanchez, ending on an incredible top E. Principal trombone Marc Ontswedder impressed the listeners with Kevin Larsson’s new solo, Jesus Shall Conquer, a tour de force for both soloist and band.

During the weekend, the position of Bandmaster of the Haaglenden Citadel Band (formerly known as Den Haag Congreszaal Band/The Hauge Congress Hall Band) was handed over from Bandmaster Rein Quint to Bandmaster Robbert Marseille, who had been serving as the Deputy Bandmaster.

On Sunday morning, the Staff Band was split in two, with a small ensemble playing at the Leiden Corps and the balance of the band at Haaglenden Corps. The afternoon concert was held in Leiden as a “thank you” to all of the supporters of the corps in this community. Here again, an enthusiastic audience was present. The soloist in the afternoon was Michel Rosenquist (euphonium), who presented a good rendition of Deeper Consecration (Sam Creamer).

The Staff Band thanked Johan Hocque for helping out on soprano cornet in the absence of Daniel Rosenquist.

Repertoire for the weekend was as follows:

Saturday evening (combined bands)

  • Daar komen in de verte de Heilssoldaatjes aan
  • The Wellingtonian
  • They Shall Come from the East (Kevin Larsson)
  • In My Life, Lord, Be Glorified (Kevin Metcalf)

Saturday evening (Haaglanden Citadel Band)

  • Hallelujah!
  • Sweet Will of God
  • Count Your Blessings
  • Lift Up Your Voice
  • Mambo Mighty God

Saturday evening (Amsterdam Staff Band)

  • He Is Exalted (Edward Mylechreest)
  • Jesus Shall Conquer (Kevin Larsson), Mark Ontswedder, trombone soloist
  • Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah (Kenneth Downie)
  • Children of Sanchez, Menno van der Woude, flügelhorn soloist
  • I’m in His Hands (Dorothy Gates)
  • Telling It! (Sam Creamer)
  • The Long Cloud of Witnesses (Kenneth Downie)

Sunday morning (Amsterdam Staff Band)

  • Flow Gently, Sweet Afton (Paul Sharman)
  • Guardian of My Soul (Darren Shaw)
  • Songs of Salvation (Andrew Mackereth)
  • Jesus, Be the Centre (Martin Cordner)
  • Lux Aurumque (arr. Andrew Poirier)

Sunday afternoon (Amsterdam Staff Band)

  • Call of the Gospel (Martin Cordner)
  • Grand Dieu, nous te bénissons (Erik Silfverberg)
  • Deeper Consecration (Sam Creamer), Michel Rosenquist, euphonium soloist
  • Fighting for the Lord (Emil Söderström)
  • Lord, With My All I Part (Brian Bowen)
  • They Shall Come from the East (Kevin Larsson)
  • Fusion (Martin Cordner)
  • The Lord Bless You and Keep You
  • Amsterdam Festival March (Norman Bearcroft)

Amsterdam Staff Band Facebook Bulletin 046, November 2013, original report by Steef Klepke