Lancaster British Brass Band follows the path first laid down in the smoky mill and mining towns of mid-nineteenth century Britain. Gradually evolving into a fixed instrumentation of 28 players (and 1 conductor), the brass band flourished under the sponsorship of mill and mine owners bent on "morale and spiritual uplift," thus laying the groundwork for a later time when the Salvation Army began capitalizing on the success of the bands by establishing brass bands as part of their outreach through music.
For concert programs brass bands borrow from virtually every musical genre. A typical program consists of transcriptions of the classics, marches, hymns, popular music arrangements, solos and, last but not least, original compositions written for the medium. Programs are selected for a balanced presentation that attempts to please a wide range of tastes and interests.
The unique sound quality of Lancaster Brass Band is due to its being composed entirely of brass winds and percussion instruments. The sound of Lancaster British Brass Band has been compared to "one big, magnificent pipe organ."
Lancaster British Brass Band consists of 28 players including 3 percussionists. It draws its personnel from the four state regions of Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and New Jersey. Originally conceived as a top-level, professional quality ensemble, it includes among its membership professional solo and ensemble players and music teacher/performers. The band members bring years of playing and teaching experience to the organization from such diverse institutions as The United States Marine Band, and the Lancaster, Harrisburg, Reading and York Symphony Orchestras. Many players are currently engaged as teachers in various public and private school venues and in such institutions of higher learning as West Chester, Millersville and Kutztown Universities, Lebanon Valley College, and The University of Delaware.
Dr. Stephen Arthur Allen came to prominence in the UK as one of the finest euphonium players of his generation. He was awarded the ALCM at age 16 and achieved national distinction in competition, winning the Open section of the British National Solo Championships. He was awarded a Royal Academy Scholarship by legendary brass band composer Eric Ball, OBE and Geoffrey Brand, conductor of Black Dyke Band.
An associate professor of music at Rider University, Dr. Allen is also a visiting professor of Euphonium at Rutgers University in New Jersey. In 2004 Dr. Allen founded the Princeton Brass Band, ensemble-in-residence at Rider University since 2010, of which he is Musical Director.
Dr. Allen is a recorded and published composer. His Gaudy Flourishes was commissioned by and premiered at Oxford University and his Heroes: A Symphonic Fanfare was written with a Rider Fellowship in Composition. Receiving his doctorate in 2003 from Oxford University, Dr. Allen is a world authority in the operas and music of Benjamin Britten on which he is widely published.
Since 2008 Dr. Allen has served on the North American Brass Band Association (NABBA).
Dr. Stephen Arthur Allen
L. Gene Clark
Kathryn Umble Smucker
Robert Belser Jr.
Robert Belser Sr.
Paul Belser Sr.
D. Scott Loose
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