Macclesfield Concert Band
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Registered charity no 517554
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Macclesfield Concert Band

Macclesfield Concert Band was formed as KEMS Concert Band in 2005 and its membership continues to grow under the popular leadership of Julia Harding. 
We play a broad range of light music: film scores, musicals, classical, jazz and swing, and band classics such as Sousa marches.  We perform in local churches, village and community halls, shopping centres and, weather permitting, bandstands.
Macclesfield Concert Band is a community wind band whose members range in age from late teens to 70+. We always welcome enquiries from prospective players; in the first instance, please e-mail us brief details of your playing experience.

At the present time, we have a particular need for trumpet, string bass/bass guitar, euphonium, tuba players. Contact Laura Blackburn if you would like to know more.

Macclesfield Concert Band Music Director Julia Harding looks back on the 2022-23 season

The band has had another busy year which started with our tour to Norfolk last August. We played to appreciative crowds in Ely, Gorleston-on-Sea and Norwich – the Norwich concert was the first time we had played in the middle of a pond! Thankfully, the weather behaved, and we all had a great time – many thanks to Kathryn Moore for all her hard work in organising this trip for us.

We’ve continued our relationship with the Friends of Victoria Park, and it looks like our Carols at the Bandstand has become a regular gig here as has one of our summer bandstand concerts. We’ve already performed at Leek this year and we are hoping that the Tegg’s Nose and Victoria Park concerts in June and July will go ahead. In the eighteen years we have played Carols at Tatton, we’ve only been inside three times – again it was a great event with the Tenants’ Hall filled to capacity.

A new development this year was the inclusion of two indoor/formal concerts to our season – these give us a chance to present repertoire which is not really suitable for bandstand performances but extends our musical horizons – I was very pleased with both concerts, and we also raised over £500 for East Cheshire Eye Society from our concert in March.  

Next year brings some new challenges – joint concerts with the Maia Singers in October and our own KEMS Macclesfield Singers in June.

Membership has remained stable and there are many members who have been with KEMS for well over ten years or more. This means that we now have a large repertoire which we can bring out for bandstand concerts and get up to scratch quickly but it also creates the challenge of finding new pieces to keep everyone interested with the right balance of familiar and new repertoire.

We have welcomed some new members this year but sadly we have had to say goodbye to a couple of members who had been with us for many years – Mike Horner and Monica Gent – we thank them for their time with us and the contribution they have made to the community of the band. Monica was a founding member of the band who attended our first rehearsal and I remember that she helped us apply for a grant to buy music for the band in its early days – we wish her all the best in her retirement.  

As always, thanks to the Band Committee for their continuing support, all the members of the band who do ‘jobs’ on request – but a special thanks is due to Richard Moss who stands down as Chair of the Band Committee aſter 10 years.

You can contact the band committee either by email (click on the name) or by telephoning the Secretary.
Music Director
Concerts Manager
On 15th October 2017, KEMS Concert Band gave the world premiere performance of Martian Saloon, by Christopher Schlechte-Bond. Click here to hear the BBC Radio 3 recording.
Macclesfield Concert Band Director: Julia Harding
Julia Harding started playing the recorder at her primary school but really caught the music bug when she was asked to play the drums and cymbals in a secondary school production of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by David Bedford - at about the same time she had started to play a clarinet that used to belong to her dad.  
When the school formed its jazz band,  Julia started to play the saxophone and played in many concerts, school productions and shows.  She first played with KEMS Orchestra at this time - third clarinet in Verdi's Triumphal March!  She then studied for a BA in Music at Dartington College of Arts and  Master's Degrees at Reading and Sheffield Universities.

Julia assisted in founding the KEMS Concert Band. She teaches woodwind and leads ensembles in Staffordshire and Cheshire schools, has a private teaching practice at her home in Macclesfield and conducts the Newcastle-Under-Lyme String Orchestra. She has appeared with the Beckford String Quartet, the KEMS Concert Band and Newcastle Strings as a soloist.
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Macclesfield Concert Band rehearsals

 Rehearsals are held each Wednesday evening during term time 7:45 to 9:45 pm at St. Peter's Church, Windmill Street, Macclesfield SK11 7HS.
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