Claire Kitchen had something of a baptism of fire when she joined SCWB in June 2006 as we were then beginning our summer season of bandstand gigs. She rose to the challenge immediately and with great enthusiasm, a characteristic that was ever present during her tenure as Director of Music. Themed concerts at the Turner Sims Concert Hall ("A Night At The Movies") and the Plaza Theatre ("America") soon followed as well as a debut Christmas performance at St Luke's Church in Stanmore.
When she joined the band, Claire was a member of the Recruiting Team for HQ Army Music at the Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall. In 2007 she successfully applied to undertake the Band Masters course which she began in September of the same year; however, it soon became clear that the demands of her job prevented her from giving 100% committment to SCWB so it was with some reluctance that she resigned her position.
Since leaving the band Claire has successfully completed the Band Masters course. She is now a Warrant Officer and in post as Band Master of the Band of the Royal Corps of Signals based at Blandford Forum. She is thoroughly enjoying her new role and has moved into her new army accommodation at Blandford. Claire also found time to marry fiance Dave in the autumn of 2008.
2005 brought with it a new conductor for SCWB when Richard Harvey took up the baton after a successful audition. At the time of joining Richard was a musician with the Royal Marines Band Service in Portsmouth; he had however, recently completed the Bandmasters' Course at the Royal Marines School of Music and was keen to put his new found skills into practice.
Richard soon made the position his own and the band quickly adapted to his style. His eighteen months with SCWB saw another exchange trip to Bavaria, a "Trafalgar Spectacular" at the Plaza Theatre in Romsey and an exciting debut for the band at the Turner Sims Concert Hall in Southampton. Unfortunately the Turner Sims concert was to be Richard's swan song as 2006 saw him drafted to the Britannia Royal Naval College band in Dartmouth.
When in Dartmouth, Richard was soon promoted to Band Colour Sergeant and then deployed to Cyprus as part of the Royal Marines Band Service Cyprus Reinforcement Unit. It was during his time here that he learnt of his promotion to Lieutenant. On completion of the Senior Corps Commission course at the Commando Training Centre Richard was promoted to Captain and in September 2007 he was appointed Director of Music of the Band of Her Majesty's Royal Marines Scotland.
We are always pleased to welcome Rich back at rehearsal on the rare occasions that his schedule allow!
Photograph courtesy of www.royalmarinesbands.co.uk
When Peter Hyland took charge in 1994, SCWB still in its infancy as a wind band; up until this time it had been a conventional brass band with roots in Redbridge Concert Brass. In 1996 it formally become known as the Southampton Concert Wind Band.
During a ten year tenure, Peter and the band broke new ground by recording their first CD and giving regular performances at the Plaza Theatre in Romsey. Peter was also responsible for beginning a highly successful association with the Bavarian wind band Harmoniemusik in Welden, Bavaria which to date, has seen four exchange trips. His decade as Director of Musician saw both the membership and the reputation of the band grow substantially, transforming SCWB into a well established concert band in the local area.
In December 2004 Peter decided it was time for him to put down the baton and explore new opportunities away from the band. He and his wife Honor (our former Chair and long time sousaphone player!) are now living happily in Gloucestershire.