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Bryan Allen leaves as Whitburn's Associate Conductor

Updated: 5 days ago

Whitburn Band has announced the departure of Bryan Allen as its Associate Conductor.

Bryan has been part of the conducting team at Whitburn since May, 2019, and has played a pivotal role in the band’s successes ever since.

He conducted Whitburn at several major events, including Martin Green’s landmark ‘Split the Air’ show earlier this year at the world-renowned Celtic Connections festival.

He led Whitburn in concerts in Germany and France during his tenure, and conducted the band and trumpet virtuoso Mike Lovatt at the Gala Concert of the National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain at the Royal Albert Hall in London last year.

Bryan also played a key role in preparing the band for contest performances, and was part of the team that won the Scottish Championships in 2022 and 2023, the Scottish Open in 2019 and 2021, and the Grand Shield in 2023. He also conducted Whitburn to victory at the Fife Brass Band Festival in 2022.

Bryan is a celebrated trumpeter, conductor, educator and adjudicator. Between 1980-1995, he performed as a trumpeter with the world-renowned Fine Arts Brass Ensemble.

With them, he toured in over 60 countries and performed in over 2000 concerts at several major concert halls and festivals, and gave premieres of over 50 new works by major composers, broadcast over 100 times on TV and radio and made countless commercial recordings.

He then worked as Head of Brass and Instrumental Performance at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama - now known as the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland - between 1995 and 2011, where he directed many orchestral, wind, brass and jazz ensembles.

He also regularly worked with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and Scottish Opera as a performer and conductor.

He was awarded the British Bandsman Award for services to brass in 1995 for his Directorship of Brass Explosion Festivals in Symphony Hall, Birmingham, and in 2011 became the first ever Fellow of the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

Bryan Allen said: “It’s been my absolute privilege and pleasure to work with the Whitburn Band for the last few years.

“Not only are they tremendous musicians, they are also a great group of people who devote their considerable energies to the band. There have been many highlights over the years, but all good things come to an end and now is the right time to move onto new challenges and opportunities.

“Thank you to all involved with the Whitburn organisation.”

Charlie Farren, Whitburn Band Chairman, added: “I have known Bryan a long time and he is one of the finest and most knowledgeable musicians I know.

“When the opportunity arose for the band to work with Bryan, we grabbed the chance and it has been a tremendous journey together.

“Everyone at Whitburn Band wishes Bryan well. I would personally like to thank Bryan for his guidance, input and support and wish him the very best for the future.”

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