The members of the panel listed below are responsible for selecting the test-pieces for the Regional and National Championships each year. The test-pieces for each Regional qualifying series are released on the eve of the September Lower Section National Finals, the year before the Regional Championships take place, and the five ‘Finals’ test-pieces are released by the middle of July in the year in which the ‘Finals’ take place.
All test-pieces selected and adjudicators appointed are revealed on this website first.
The Kapitol Music Panel enjoys complete independence in the selection of the test-pieces, and each member of the panel possesses a wide experience in playing with, conducting and adjudicating bands at every level in the five ‘National’ sections, as you can see from their biographies below.
Philip Morris – Chairman
Alan Hope – Secretary
Alan Hope has been involved in the brass band movement for many years as a player, a conductor, a teacher and an adjudicator. A former euphonium player, he took up playing the bass trombone whilst in the Royal Air Force.
He started conducting in the 1970s and, after success with several Lower Section bands, moved into the Championship Section where, for a period of 15 years, he conducted a number of bands with considerable success. He has also conducted several operatic and choral societies. A former teacher in Sunderland, Alan Hope has experienced brass banding at all levels through his involvement with the musical education of many hundreds of pupils. He is also a former conductor of the North Regional Youth Band.
In addition to conducting and teaching, he has always been involved in the administrative side of the British brass band movement. He is North of England Regional Secretary and Regional Co-ordinator, as well as Secretary of the Music Panel for Kapitol Promotions Ltd., which promotes the National Brass Band Championships of Great Britain.
Alan Hope has adjudicated a raft of competitions throughout the UK including the National Finals on three occasions, ‘Regional’ contests, Butlins’ Mineworkers and the Scottish Open. He has also served as an Executive Member of the Association of Brass Band Adjudicators.
C. Brian Buckley
Brian Buckley adjudicates regularly at major brass and wind band festivals throughout the United Kingdom. With diplomas in conducting, performing and teaching, Brian Buckley is a busy and experienced adjudicator, conductor and examiner.
Since commencing his conducting career in 1968, he has focused his attention mainly on bands within Wales and the West Country, with a great deal of success. He has guided bands from the Lower Sections to the Championship Section in successive years, collecting ‘National’ honours along the way.
From his early teens, Brian Buckley established a sound reputation as a cornet and trumpet soloist of quality, and was principal cornet for one of Wales’ leading bands, Tredegar, for almost 25 years.
A prolific prizewinner at solo competitions and festivals, he won the Welsh Solo Champion title on five occasions, which featured a hat trick of victories in the early 1960s. From the mid-1950s to the late 1960s, he was also the principal cornet and leader of the National Brass Band of Wales for many of the band’s concert tours linked with the National Eisteddfod of Wales.
Much of Brian Buckley’s time is spent guiding and mentoring aspiring young musicians. He is Secretary of the Association of Brass Band Adjudicators and Chairman of the National Association of Brass Band Conductors (Welsh Area).
John Maines began his playing career with the Wigan Boys Club, Prescott Cables and Cammell Laird bands.
He spent some of his playing career in Cornwall with St. Austell and Bodmin bands, where he quickly made his mark with a succession of victories at solo competitions throughout the South-east.
At that time, he became the Champion Trombone Player of Great Britain on three successive occasions, one of only two players to achieve a hat trick in this event.
John Maines went on to play solo trombone for Stanshawe, Bristol and Fairey Engineering bands, as well as principal trombone for Harry Mortimer’s Men o’ Brass. He become principal trombone for Black Dyke Band, with which he won many major titles, including a hat trick of ‘European’ Championships.
Since 1979, John Maines has been a tutor of trombone at the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain and is a Council member of the organisation. He is also a member of the Association of Brass Band Adjudicators, and regularly judges in Britain and abroad. He also directs the National Youth Brass Band of Denmark.
A BA Music (Hons.) graduate from the University of Sheffield, John Maines is in great demand as a conductor of many of Britain’s best brass bands, as well as a master of ceremonies at several prestigious banding occasions.
He presented the long-running BBC weekly radio programme, GMR Brass, for many years and, in 1995, received the Manchester Music Makers’ Award for his contribution to the broadcasting of music in the Greater Manchester area. He now presents the World of Brass on-line radio show.
Richard Evans is one of the most colourful and flamboyant characters on the British brass band scene. Born in Aldershot, the regular son of a regular soldier, he spent the first two years of his life in India. On returning to England, his family moved to Preston, Lancashire, and it was in nearby Leyland, with the British Legion Band, that Richard Evans was introduced to the cornet.
Within three years, he was one of the founder members of the National youth Brass Band of Great Britain, for which he became Principal Cornet under the baton of the late Harry Mortimer, OBE, CBE. He moved from the British Legion Band to Leyland Motors (the forerunner of the band known as Leyland today. There, Richard Evans studied under the band’s forefathers, Harold Moss and William Haydock.
National Service took Richard Evans to Berlin and, when he returned to civilian life, he joined Black Dyke Mills Band.
However, it was in the art of conducting that Richard was to carve a brilliant career. Graduating from the Royal Northern College of Music, he became a full-time teacher and also played freelance trumpet with the BBC Northern Symphony Orchestra, the Manchester Mozart Orchestra, Syd Lawrence and many other famous ensembles. During this period, his conducting skills were being perfected in a vast theatre of experience including in brass bands, choral societies and the directions of operas.
He became conductor of Wingates Temperance Band in 1975 and went on to win the British Open Championship with the band three months later. The following year, he joined Fariey Engineering Band as its musical Director and, in 1978, was recruited to rebuild Leyland Vehicles Band with the specific remit of achieving Championship Section within three years, which he accomplished. He then worked with Foden’s and Yorkshire Building Society bands and, in 2004, accepted the position of resident Musical Director with Grimethorpe Colliery (UK Coal) Band. Today, he enjoys connections with the world-famous Brighouse and Rastrick Band as Associate Conductor, although most of his work is now freelance.
Richard Evans was recently appointed Visiting Professor of Brass to Senzoku Gakuen College of Music in Tokyo and his prowess as a conductor, teacher, adjudicator and movement leader was recognised in 1986, when he received the J. Henry Iles Medal from the Worshipful Company of Musicians. He has worked with bands all over the world and is Musical Director of the National Youth Brass Band of Scotland.
Michael's earliest musical education came from the peripatetic services of North Staffordshire. This led to honours degree studies at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, during which time he was a member of the trombone section of Britannia Building Society (Fodens) Band and a post graduate course studying conducting with Howard Snell. Upon completion of his studies Michael was invited to work at the RNCM as a conductor and administrator, which he did for 5 years.
Michael's conducting career took flight with the Point of Ayr Band from North Wales. During his 5 year tenure the band enjoyed what is arguably its most successful period winning the Welsh Area twice, many entertainment contest victories and third prize at the 1998 European Championships.
Further permanent relationships have seen him work with the BT Band as Musical Director and Leyland Band as Associate Conductor. As Professional Conductor he has worked with Flowers Band, Tredegar Town Band and a highly successful relationship with Co-Operative Funeralcare Band that netted 2 Scottish Opens and an All England International Masters title in three years.
Educational work also forms an important part of Michael's musical life. He is Course Director of the Wessex Band Summer School. He is also a regular guest conductor for school projects in both Staffordshire and Leicestershire and undertakes much training work with bands of all levels from championship to youth including being Associate Conductor of Lions Youth Band.
Currently Michael is Musical Director of the Ratby Co-Operative Band, a position he has held since 2004. Based in Leicestershire, this is an organisation that boasts around 140 players spread across 5 bands from beginners to senior band level. As MD of the organisation Michael oversees all aspects of its artistic development paying particular attention to the movement of players between the bands.
In addition to his work at Ratby 2009 saw Michael delighted to accept a major appointment, to become Musical Director of Fodens Band. This relationship has produced high quality concerts and recordings that have been met with critical acclaim and awards from the Banding Press. It has also seen a close collaboration with composer-in-residence Andy Scott that has introduced audiences all over the country to a new musical language for brass band.
Paul was born and educated in South Wales. By the age of 16 he had already served as solo horn to numerous ensembles including the National Youth Brass Band of Wales, Parc and Dare and Tredegar Town Bands. Paul continued to fulfil his early musical promise being invited to join the world famous Black Dyke Mills Band at the tender age of 18.
Paul enjoyed huge concert and contest success with Black Dyke and made several CD, radio and television appearances with celebrities such as Elton John, Jools Holland, Tori Amos, The Beautiful South and Sting. Paul was fortunate to be part of the team that made the "Grand Slam" of Brass Band titles being the European, British Open and National Titles in the same year.
During his time with Black Dyke Paul played with other fine bands such as YBS, Brighouse and Rastrick, Leyland, Grimethorpe and Fodens when required. As a student at the Huddersfield University he studied music and furthered his musical education under the guidance of Phillip McCann, Geoffrey Whitham, Sandy Smith and many other eminent brass band professionals and personalities. Outside of University life Paul's main influence and passion for conducting came from Nicholas Childs, Allan Withington and particularly James Watson who was the conductor at Black Dyke during his tenure there. Paul honed his teaching and conducting skills from the wealth of experience from the people he surrounded himself with whilst in Yorkshire and then returned to South Wales to settle close to his roots with an honours degree in Music.
Paul spent six years as Musical Director of the Newbridge band where he led them through a period of unparalleled success in their history. As one of the most successful young conductors in Wales Paul's contest wins stretched from Third section to Championship section, incorporating 19 wins in total during his partnership with Newbridge. Of note were League Champions of Wales 4 times, Champion Band of Wales 4 times and Champion Band of Great Britain 2nd Section.
In April 2009 Paul became the Musical Director of the Flowers band where he continues to conduct them in high profile concerts and contests throughout the year. Under his direction Flowers achieved their highest ever placing at the National Championships of Great Britain and were crowned West of England Champions on each of his contest debuts.
Paul spent many years studying the adjudication process and, under the guidance of C.Brian Buckley, focussed this interest further culminating in his inclusion within the Association of Brass Band Adjudicators (ABBA). Paul now enjoys a very active schedule of conducting and adjudicating appointments throughout the UK.