Band Update – by Vilde Gaupholm

The first concert of our 2016 concert series was a great success! This concert was our first time in the beautiful Schonell Theatre in the University of Queensland which was a great venue for such a meaningful concert.

We would like to thank everyone who came to the concert and purchased CDs! Your support is very much appreciated. If you missed out on purchasing a CD at our concert, click HERE to find out how to get your very own CD!

We are now excited to work towards the next concert in the series.This will be a showcase of the band’s ten years of excellence. The concert will be held the 25th of September in the Theatre at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music at South Bank.

Further information about the concert will be published soon.

Until then, the band has several performances to look forward to. The band will be performing in the show En Avant, Marche! at QPAC during the Brisbane Festival 03-07 September. More information and ticket bookings here:

Contest Blog by Vilde Gaupholm

soloistsAnother Nationals is over, and we in Excelsior couldn’t be happier with the results. After an intense weekend of competition Excelsior became the Australian A Grade Champions 2016!

The band performed the hymn and test piece on the Friday, and was very satisfied with the performance. The Saturday started with the marching. The band’s drum major was Craig Millar, and he led the band to a solid second place in the marching contest.

The performance of the own choice, Audivi Media Nocte by Oliver Waespi, was a special experience! The band played better than ever and the soloists delivered amazing solos.

Although the weekend was somewhat rocky, the experience came in handy! Marc Nethercot, one of our 2nd trombone players, had to go back to Brisbane on Friday morning due to family illness. Four trombones became three, and a few changes had to be made, but all-in-all it went very well.

Three of Excelsior’s members also competed in the solo competition. The band is very proud of the soloist that competed! Jaime Brown won the Champion of Soprano Cornet, Benjamin Tubb won Champion of Tenor Horn and Kerry Vann won the Champion of Percussion, Multi Percussion, Timpani, Mallet Keyboard and Snare Drum.

We would like to congratulate all the bands who performed during the weekend! Thank you for yet another successful competition!

By Vilde Gaupholm, Norwegian trombone student at the Queensland Conservatorium and 2nd trombone for Brisbane Excelsior Band.

Excelsior Reclaim National Title

Brisbane Excelsior reclaims Australian National title in spectacular fashion in Gawler, South Australia

Having made the trip to the 2015 event in Sydney only to finish runner-up, Brisbane Excelsior returned to Gawler near Adelaide in South Australia to reclaim the famous Fireman’s Helmet Trophy by winning the Australian National title in what was truly ‘spectacular’ fashion.

That was the single adjective used by adjudicator Dwayne Bloomfield to describe the performance under MD Howard Taylor of their own-choice section of Oliver Waespi’s ‘Audivi Media Nocte’, which secured the title for the eighth time since 2005 in commanding fashion.

Earlier they had produced a fine account of the set-work, ‘Albion’ by Jan van der Roost, as well as their hymn selection ‘The Candle of the Lord’ by Joy Webb arr. Peter Graham, to lay the foundation of a victory which was sealed by a robust ‘Knight Templar’ march and a rendition of the former European Championship set-work that left the adjudicator breathless in admiration.

“Spectacular! Well done conductor and band. That’s all I have to say about this,” Dwayne Bloomfield scribbled onto his remarks sheet as Brisbane secured victory by winning all four disciplines of the contest.

Band President Gareth Lawless said: “We’re thrilled with the result and very proud that this remarkable group of musicians continues to perform at such a world class level.

The approach and determination of the band to push to new heights under Howard Taylor’s inspirational direction was shown on the weekend in Gawler. We are delighted by the success, but determined to add to it in the future.”

He added: “Being able to bring back the Fireman’s Helmet is only part of what we want to achieve – and we have a number of exciting new musical avenues opening up for us.”

Victory once again underlines their credentials as arguably the finest band in the southern hemisphere, as they Brisbane XLCR led home a brave but rather forlorn challenge from eight well beaten rivals.

Brisbane’s success has now likened to that of the great St John Ambulance Band from New South Wales who won six titles between 1948 and 1956 and Hawthorn who claimed eight titles from 1985 to 1995, as the Fireman’s Helmet Trophy (first presented in 1971) once again returned to their trophy cabinet.

(Edited and adapted, with thanks, from

The Spirit Lives – CD Launch and Concert

Anzac Graphic Website
The Spirit Lives

CD Launch and Concert
May 1,  3pm, Schonell Theatre

Welcome to The Spirit Lives an ANZAC themed concert with Brisbane Excelsior Band, 1st of May at 3 pm in The Schonell Theatre, University of Queensland, St. Lucia.

The Brisbane Excelsior Band with conductor Howard Taylor want to celebrate and honour ANZAC day and the Australians who served and died in Gallipoli and other wars by dedicating a concert to the people and music that characterised Australia during the war. The concert will include several well know tunes as well as solos and a few larger pieces from the brass band repertoire. So whether you enjoy the classic tunes from the war times, or you are just a brass band fan, come along to the concert!

During 2015 the band recorded an ANZAC-themed CD and this concert will be the official launch. Make sure you pick up a copy!

Tickets are $20 for adults, $15 for concessions and $10 for current/ex-servicemen and women.

Please email to reserve tickets or for group booking info.

Free covered parking is available next to the theatre.

We in Brisbane Excelsior Band are looking forward to the concert and hope to see you there!

The new CD is now available from our store.

Australian Championships 2016

helmetThe most wonderful time of the year is finally here! The Brisbane Excelsior Band is getting ready for the National Championships in Gawler, South Australia 25-28th of April.

The test piece this year is Albion by the Dutch composer Jan Van der Roost. The piece was commissioned by the Swiss brass band federation as the test piece for the National Brass Band Championships of England, Belgium, The Netherlands, and Switzerland in 2001, and for Norway in 2002. Albion, along with Excalibur and Stonehenge, is the third major piece for brass band in which Jan Van der Roost took his inspiration from the British Middle Ages. The piece paints a picture of the conquest of Albion (the earliest known name of the British Island), in which the listener is taken back to the time of King Arthur and his legendary Knights of the Round Table.

The band will also be performing an own-choice maor work, a stage march, a sacred item (hymn tune) and will also be competing in the street march.

We’re hoping for yet another win after being pipped to the post by the excellent Wellington Brass Band from New Zealand last year.

If you are not in South Australia during the Nationals, make sure you follow the live streaming of the competition on

Good luck to all bands competing!