" ...dazzling dexterity... "
Natalie Wheen, Classic FM
" ...dazzling dexterity... "
Natalie Wheen, Classic FM
Visit to Trent College - March 2022
In March this year we enjoyed leading a brass workshop with the students at Trent College and The Elms schools in Long Eaton, Nottinghamshire.
We were so excited to be back on the road again as we headed north to Nottingham on a beautifully sunny morning. A warm welcome and a delicious school lunch awaited us then we set up ready for the various brass workshops. Jayne was coaching the younger brass players through some sea shanties, Becky worked with the 17 (yes 17!) trombonists from the junior school. They had a great time practicing ‘We Will Rock You’, apparently entertaining and no doubt empowering the staff meeting happening in the adjacent room! Sarah and Helen worked with the senior brass group, taking them through some challenging corners in the theme from ‘Jurassic Park’. We got all the groups together for an informal run through of our pieces.
Then we had some time to relax, set up and rehearse for our evening concert. We performed our ‘Wonder Women’ programme which showcases female composers, songwriters and historical figures. It involves a huge variety of styles, techniques and some different stage positions to make the most of the school chapel’s acoustics.
We started off in four corners of the chapel with an atmospheric plainchant by Hildegard von Bingen. Later we gave the world premiere of ‘Torc’, a piece written by Helen. It’s about Boudicca, queen of the Celtic Iceni tribe who famously defeated the Romans. It uses some new and extended techniques on the instrument which the audience really liked. Also new in the programme was an arrangement of Cortège by Lili Boulanger and Kehaar’s Theme by Angela Morley, which was a glorious opener to our second half.
It was so good to be performing together again that the usual nerves were replaced with a genuine sense of euphoria and relief.
A big thank you to the school’s brass tutor Will Mee and Director of Music Nick Parrans-Smith for all their help and support in making it happen. We look forward to visiting again!
new sheet music for sale!
We have published some new sheet music! Despite our concerts and workshops being cancelled during the coronavirus lockdown, we have been hard at work bringing some new pieces and arrangements to our publishing catalogue. Take a look!
New trombone quartet titles include Bizet Suite No.2 from 'Carmen', Gounod Finale from Ballet Music from 'Faust', Grieg In the Hall of the Mountain King from 'Peer Gynt' and Schumann Kinderscenen.
Three original quartet works by Dan Jenkins:
Señoras - Variations on Spanish Ladies; this is Don Juan's adventure on the high seas
Scenes from Sherwood - a fun portrayal of Robin Hood, his friends and escapades
24 New Chorales - a modern take on Bach chorales (every trombone quartet's staple diet!), exploring more complex chords.
We have expanded our catalogue of trios, including a challenging collection of J.S.Bach Preludes and Fugues, the equally challenging Daniel Speer Three Sonatas - arranged from the two sonatas for bassoons and a sonata for two violas and continuo.
More intermediate level trombone trios: A Tudor Maske - fun pieces by composers of 16th and early 17th century England, such as King Henry VIII, William Byrd, Thomas Morley, Robert Johnson and John Bull.
Then following on from the Schubert book is More Canons and Chorales - this time exploring music by Mozart, Beethoven, Weber, Schumann and Brahms.
Please explore our new look publishing catalogue!
Luxembourg, Birmingham and Glasgow, January/February 2020
In January 2020, we took our Wonder Women programme to Luxembourg to the Escher Conservatoire in Esch-sur-Alzette. Despite the very early start to the day (4am taxis to the airport) we found the energy to give some coaching and lessons to the trombone and brass students on arrival. There was a very supportive and appreciative audience for our evening recital (despite a tinge of sadness with it being January 31st, the day the United Kingdom formally left the European Union). Special thanks to the conservatoire's trombone teacher Claude Origer for inviting us and showing us such great hospitality after the concert.
Next stop on our mini-tour was Birmingham; a visit to the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire to give a short recital and adjudicate the Bernard Brown Brass Chamber Prize. What a fabulous new campus! This conservatoire is really on the up and any budding young students should definitely consider applying to study there. We heard four brass groups: a trombone quartet, two brass quintets and a tuba quartet. We were treated to a wide variety of music and an impressive standard of playing. However it was a unanimous decision that the tuba quartet (baritone, euphonium and two tubas) When Tuba Come One were the winners of the prize. They performed a highly entertaining and polished programme which was a joy to hear. We wish them well in what will undoubtedly be a bright future. Many thanks to the RBC's Head of Brass, trombone tutor and general hero Amos Miller for inviting us.
Then after a little break to unpack, repack, do other rehearsals, concerts, etc we regrouped again in Glasgow for a three day residency at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. We had been planning this residency with Head of Brass John Logan for a while and really wanted to make the most of our visit to the conservatoire's thriving brass department. We coached some brass
chamber groups, took a trombone sectional on Mahler Symphony No.2, and played through some trombone choir pieces; and that was just day one! We also took part in the RCS's Brass for Schools concerts to local school children. The programme theme 'Dances with Valves' encompassed everything from Susato to a 90's Dance music mix, ending of course with the Can-Can! A great initiative to a full house; a truly memorable event. More coaching followed, this time with the older trombone students focusing on their upcoming recital repertoire. This was a very impressive standard of playing and we enjoyed working more closely with the college's trombonists. The final morning was taken up with the by now usual indecision of whether to go for a morning run or not, packing, then a short walk to the conservatoire to top and tail our Wonder Women lunchtime recital programme. It was a packed hall with a very appreciative crowd, and a smattering of trombonists just to calm the nerves! ;)
Big thanks to John Logan and the RCS for inviting us!
Read a review by the Bandsman magazine.
" the music was brought to the stage by a chamber group at the peak of its powers in a performance of elegance, subtlety and considerable variety in tonal colour. "
This summer we will be premiering our new programme 'Wonder Women: Muses, Queens and Warriors' at the Church Stretton Festival in Shropshire on Friday 16th August.
Presenting a sumptuous selection of music showcasing female trailblazers in music and throughout history. Music by Hildegard von Bingen, Camilla de Rossi, Nadia and Lili Boulanger, Saskia Apon, Nina Simone and Joni Mitchell, as well as colourful portrayals of Boudicca, Cleopatra and Calamity Jane!
Please come along to what promises to be a fun evening.
Low Brass Workshop and Concert in Cheddar, May 2019
In May we returned to one of our favourite venues, the Kings Theatre in Cheddar to work with local young players and share a concert with them and the Cheddar Valley Music Club Brass Band under the expert guidance of brass teaching legend Anne Higgs, who made the whole event possible.
We had a great day meeting everyone and hearing so many trombones, baritones, euphoniums and tubas together in one room! Here are some photos and a link to some reviews of our visit.
Hampshire Music Service Trombone Day, April 2019
In April we visited Fareham for the Hampshire Music Service Trombone Day organised by Jon Cranston; huge thanks to him for making this possible. We had planned this event for early February but heavy snow meant we had to postpone. Luckily we had great weather for our eventual visit.
Redbridge Music Service Trombone Workshop and Concert, April 2019
In April we were invited to give a Trombone Workshop for Redbridge Music Service at Sir James Hawkey Hall in Woodford, Essex. We started with a group warm up for everyone to get limbered up. Then we split into two groups to work on some ensemble pieces. The afternoon culminated in a joint concert showcasing all the work throughout the day, finishing with a rousing rendition of the theme to Indiana Jones played by everyone! Huge thanks to Chris Wilcox for organising the whole event.
Visit to Hampton School, March 2019
This photo is from a short performance we gave to the girls at the lady Eleanor Holles Junior School in March.
Later that day we gave some informal concerts to the boys at Hampton School then we were guests at the school's Brass Day evening concert. We played Frolic for Trombones with the student trombonists accompanied by Hampton Brass Band, we then joined in with their 10 piece ensemble for some old favourites from the repertoire, as well as playing a couple of sets on our own including Simon Wills' Sonata Tenebrosa, as well as music by Monteverdi, Gimenez and Melba Liston.
It was a thoroughly enjoyable day and big thanks to Dave Ward for organising everything so brilliantly.
Recital and masterclass at the RWCMD, January 2019
In January we returned to the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff to give a lunchtime recital in the fantastic acoustic of the Dora Stoutzker Concert Hall and then take afternoon masterclasses with the trombone students. We were welcomed by dynamic new Head of Brass Roger Argente, but were also very happy to see trombone gurus Chris Mowat, Kevin Price and Phil Goodwin. As part of our programme we gave the UK Premiere of Simon Wills Sonata Tenebrosa. Thanks to all the students who took part in the masterclasses. We look forward to visiting again.
Trombone Class at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, June 2018
We had a fun evening with the trombone students at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in June.
On a swelteringly hot Monday night in an equally sweltering rehearsal studio we coached the trombonists through some quartets and performed some of our repertoire to them. We also discussed choosing repertoire, arranging and building a programme and organising performances.
We topped off the class with all 18 students playing through some trombone octets including Berlioz 'March to the Scaffold', 'All Through the Night' and Fucik 'Entry of the Gladiators' arranged by Duncan Wilson.
The sound was certainly awe-inspiring, especially in such a confined space!!
Thanks to all the students who took part and made us feel so welcome.
We look forward to meeting you all again in the future.
Concerts for Pinner Music Festival and Solway Arts in Cumbria, 2017
Review of our concert at the Pinner Music Festival in June 2017.
"... I'd no how idea how nimble a trombone, even the sonorous bass, could be."
Review from our concert for Solway Arts in Wigton, Cumbria from May 2017.
"... one of the finest musical recitals to have been presented in Wigton in recent years."
Première of new work at Bristol University, April 2017
In April this year we visited Bristol University to give a lunchtime recital at their stunning Victoria Rooms. The main reason for our visit was to première a new work for trombone quartet - 'It Felt Like Drowning' by Elan Higueras Calvo. Elan was the winner of the 'Inspired - A Life of Breath' composition competition organised by Jess Farr-Cox in collaboration with Prof. John Pickard and the University's Composition department. Elan writes: "It Felt Like Drowning is a piece that explores the pain and suffering that victims of domestic violence abuse experience. Breathlessness, anxiety and silent resilience are expressed musically in this trombone quartet." We stood in a line along the front of the stage quite far apart from each other, this was to enable the spatial effects of the rhythmic exchanges between players. With very long held notes, quick mute changes, cross-harmonic slurs and flutter tongue effects there was lots of tension and drama created in his writing. Sound clip coming soon...
We also performed music of Monteverdi, in his 450th birthday year, Beethoven, Gershwin and Bernstein, celebrating 60 years since he wrote West Side Story.
After the recital we gave a brass masterclass with members of the University's brass department. We heard a variety of styles and players perform solo works with piano. We greatly enjoyed what was lovely sunny day in Bristol and a huge thanks to Elan, Jess and John for making it all possible.
Picture above is a glass-blown trombone, a work of art from Air: Visualising the Invisible in British Art 1768-2017 at the RWA, Bristol.
'In the Same Breath' by Kate Williams, 2008, borosilicate glass / 40 x 125 x 40 cm / courtesy of the artist / Photo (copyright) Yiannis Katsaris
New Music for Trombone Choir now available!
We have some brand new arrangements for trombone choir now available from our shop page.
They include Mussorgsky's complete 'Pictures at an Exhibition' for 12 trombones arranged by Robert Holliday, plus trombone octet arrangements of Fucik 'Entry of the Gladiators', Berlioz 'March to the Scaffold' and Gounod 'March of a Marionette' by Duncan Wilson, as well as Wagner 'Parsifal Prelude', Mussorgsky 'Great Gate of Kiev' and Tchaikovsky 'A Pine Forest in Winter' by Robert Holliday.
Please have a browse through our catalogue!
Cheddar Valley Music Club, April 2016
We were thrilled and very humbled to receive this handmade 'Thank You' card from all the students in the Cheddar Valley Music Club after our recent visit. Inside it read:
" Thank you so much for the very special day Bones Apart gave us in Cheddar. You are the most amazing players and teachers. We hope you will be able to visit us again soon. With best wishes from The Cheddar Valley Music Club "
It was filled with lovely comments from all of the students telling us what they each enjoyed from the day.
Receiving feedback like this is so important to us and it really drives us forward in our passion for music and bringing it to as many people as possible. Thank You! :)
Artwork by Katherine Amey
Slings, Arrows and Saturday night on Sauchiehall Street!
This month we embark on a series of concerts and workshops around the UK, with performances in Nottingham, Glasgow and Cheddar.
On Friday 8th April we are giving an 'After Hours' recital at the Royal Concert Hall, Nottingham. We perform immediately after the Hallé Orchestra's concert that evening and our eclectic programme will include 'Scenes from Sherwood' by Dan Jenkins. Where better to hear this uniquely entertaining take on the legendary characters of Robin Hood, Maid Marian, Friar Tuck and the villainous Sheriff of Nottingham!
Then from April 15-17 we are heading to Glasgow. We give a lunchtime recital at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland on Friday 15th April, when we will perform our Shakespeare-inspired programme 'If Music Be The Food Of Love'. We join this year's celebrations of 'The Bard' with music by Dowland, Mendelssohn, Duke Ellington, Jason Carr and Leonard Bernstein to name a few. This is followed by a masterclass with the brass students of the RCS.
On Saturday 16th April we will be giving a short workshop at the junior RCS and we look forward to hearing and working alongside these talented youngsters.
The finale to our Scottish visit will be taking part in the British Trombone Society's Scotland Event on Sunday 17th April, also held at the RCS. The day will include workshops, massed blows, recitals, trade stands, masterclasses, Led Zeppelin and maybe even some haggis! Do come along and say hello!
Christmas Sheet Music Now Available!
We are delighted to announce that we have a number of seasonal quartet arrangements now available to buy from our Shop.
For those of you who are struggling for Christmas gift ideas you can also buy a copy of our CD All We Want for Christmas, but hurry and catch the Christmas post!
Bromley Trombone Workshop, March 2015
In March we were very glad to be invited to take part in the 2015 Bromley Trombone Workshop.
We gave an informal recital to all the trombone delegates and later coached the massed trombone choir. We performed in the evening concert which included a joint piece with Bromley Temple SA Band and their conductor Geoffrey Nunn. A huge highlight was meeting up with Brett, Paul, Garry and Adrian of the Black Dyke Trombone Quartet - we couldn't resist posing for a selfie!
Special thanks to Richard Debonnaire for organising every last detail, even down to the delicious tea! We had a fantastic day! To read Richard's review of the event click here
To watch some videos of the Bromley Trombone Workshop click here
Red Nose Day at Dulwich College, March 2015
We visited Dulwich College during their first ever 'Trombone Week' for some workshops and a recital. It also happened to be Red Nose Day for Comic Relief! We had a great time with all the brass students there and huge thanks to the Head of Brass Robin Smith for making it all possible.
To read a review from our visit please click here
If Music Be The Food Of Love...
We have some exciting performances and workshops coming up in March. We begin on March 2nd with giving some ensemble coaching and adjudicating the Bernard Brown Brass Ensemble Competition at the Birmingham Conservatoire. On March 13th we are off to London for workshops and a recital at Dulwich College.
We are very pleased to be part of this year's Bromley Trombone Day on March 28th - it promises to be a fun filled day with something for everyone!
Then we are off to Appleby in Cumbria to give a recital of our Shakespeare programme "If Music Be The Food Of Love..." on March 29th. Its a few years since our last visit to Appleby and we are really looking forward to it!
To read a review in 'The Trombonist' magazine of our Appleby concert in March click here
Conn-Selmer Artists Roster
El Nuevo Mundo, Summer 2014
In June and July we will be touring our programme entitled 'El Nuevo Mundo' - a musical voyage from the Spanish peninsula to the discovery of the Americas. The programme is a colourful mix of music by Purcell, Nazareth, Copland, Gershwin and Piazzolla.
We hope to see some of you there!
New Sheet Music titles
Our Sheet Music store has just been updated with several new and exciting arrangements on our new Trombone Choir and Trombone Trio pages. Titles include Schubert 18 Canons and Chorales for trombone trio, as well as new octet arrangements of Elgar's Nimrod, Puccini's Nessun Dorma and Welsh traditional All Through The Night.
More titles coming soon!
In March we began touring our new 'Chasing Legends' programme of music inspired by myths, legends and fairy tales.
Music by Monteverdi, Tchaikovsky, Massenet, Ravel and Malcolm Arnold as well as a new commission by Dan Jenkins Scenes from Sherwood. We gave performances across the UK in Leicester, Manchester and Cardiff as well as an appearance at the International Belgian Brass Festival.
Read the review of our concert at the Leicester International Festival here
All We Want For Christmas
We have recently released our latest CD entitled All We Want for Christmas
Plenty of Christmas favourites including: Prokofiev Troika, Berlioz Shepherd's Farewell, Warlock Bethlehem Down, Handel For Unto Us A Child Is Born, alongside popular festive songs Santa Baby, Winter Wonderland and Let it Snow!
Bones Apart in the USA
In April Bones Apart embarked upon another tour to the USA this time travelling to Ohio, Chicago, New York and New Jersey to give a series of master classes, ensemble workshops and concerts including a joint concert with the trombone section of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and a masterclass with students at the Juilliard School of Music... (read more)
OUT NOW! Gershwin - Three Preludes
New 10th Anniversary CD 'ten'
"This latest CD from Bones Apart celebrates the 10th anniversary of the group's formation. The group's previous four albums have attracted the highest accolades worldwide and I predict that this fifth album will also receive great reviews"
President of the British Trombone Society
Former Bass Trombone, London Symphony Orchestra
four4four features four original works for trombone quartet by Simon Wills, Eric Ewazen, Brian Lynn and Dan Jenkins. For more information please visit our shop page.
"Bones Apart has done it again! The playing on this CD is first class. I really enjoyed the blend, balance, and terrific musicianship. Very inspiring. I highly recommend this cd to all. Bravissima!"
Principal Trombone, New York Philharmonic Orchestra
Bones Apart at the International Trombone Festival
As part of their 10th Anniversary tour Bones Apart appeared at the International Trombone Festival in Austin, Texas from July 7th - 10th.
"Bones Apart demonstrated not only wondrously clean, clear and full trombone playing (how do they produce such a well-blended sound all the time?!), but also showed a special blend of humility and charisma in their interactions with the audience"
Muso Magazine interview
10th Anniversary Tour
The quartet are embarking on series of concerts celebrating their 10th anniversary including performances at the International Trombone Festival in Austin, Texas featuring many of the pieces from the new CD plus a new commission 'Señoras' by Dan Jenkins specially written for the tour.
"Bones Apart visited the RNCM in October this year in commemoration of 10 years since they started here. In their concert they showed the RNCM brass students just how things should be done, with a flawless concert, demonstrating perfect balance, intonation, and their wonderful musical versatility."
Director of Brass Studies, Royal Northern College of Music