As their first offical engagement of 2015, on 21 February 2015, the New York Staff Band (Bandmaster Ronald Waiksnoris) ventured to southern New Jersey fo the annual Mid-Atlantic Brass Band Festival. The Staff Band was featured as the special guest band for the event, held on the campus of Rowan University in Glassboro.
The Canadian Staff Band (Bandmaster John Lam) visited Mountain Citadel in Hamilton, Ontario, on the weekend of 7 – 8 February 2015. The weekend included the 2015 installment of the annual Blazing Brass concert series, a music festival on Saturday evening, and Sunday morning worship.
The Birmingham Citadel Band (Bandmaster Gavin Lamplough) was delighted to be back at Symphony Hall, Birmingham, for the British Open band contest on 6 September 2014. The band, as in previous years, provided a one-hour concert in the concourse as thousands gathered for this special day in the banding calendar.
The Maidstone Band (Bandmaster Nigel Yalden) attended the last day of the Kent County Show on 13 July 2014, as they have done for several years. The band presented two bandstand concerts and accompanied hymns for an ecumenical church service.
The sun shone and shone and shone all day and there was a real “feelgood” factor at the 90th Annual West of England Bandsmen’s Festival on Saturday, 21 June 2014. Crowds flocked to Molinnis Park in the village of Bugle and all was well with the brass band community of Cornwall and beyond as 30 bands thrilled the audience with a wonderful day of music-making.
On the last weekend of May 2014, the Amsterdam Staff Band (Bandmaster Olaf Ritman) could be found in the United Kingdom! The Staff Band was invited to celebrate the 135th anniversary of the eldest Salvation Army band in the world, the Consett Corps Band. The Staff Band brought with them Ben van Dijk, bass trombonist of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, as guest soloist, in conjunction with the release of his new solo recording, World Concerto, which includes the Staff Band as the accompanying group.
On Saturday, 31 May 2014, the Bermuda Divisional Band (Bandmaster Warren W. Jones) marked its 18th Annual Spring Festival of Music at the North Street Citadel Corps in Hamilton, Bermuda. This year’s festival had the theme Good Ol’ Army.
The Canadian Staff Band, both in full and in ensemble, participated in numerous observances of the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the SS Empress of Ireland. This disaster, the worst maritime accident in the history of Canada, claimed 1,012 lives, of which 167 were Salvationists traveling to an international congress in London, England.
The German Staff Band (Bandmaster Heinrich Schmidt) was joined by the International Staff Band (Bandmaster Dr. Stephen Cobb) for a gala weekend celebrating the German band’s 25th anniversary, 28 – 30 March 2014.