Come on along and join the band

ARE you someone who “used to play” a musical instrument? If so, the Derwent Valley Concert Band (DVCB) would like to meet you. “Do you have access to an instrument you would like to learn to play? Then you should come to see us as well,” the band’s chief conductor, Lyall McDermott, said.

At 5pm on Wednesday, March 1, the DVCB Development Band is meeting for the first time this year. “This is the perfect time, the perfect opportunity to make that decision which will enhance the rest of your life,” Mr McDermott said. “Come along and have a chat with our amazing Development Band conductors, Frances White and Nicole Taylor, and find out how and why you might become involved with one of our bands,” he said.

“Young players are very welcome too, of course. Starting young is a great way to develop fantastic music-specific skills, but there exists now a huge volume of scientific study to show that those students who involve themselves in music-making have greater brain development and superior academic outcomes than those who don’t.”

Mr McDermott said making music together with other musicians was an amazing experience. “It offers the chance to meet new people and make new friends with whom you can share the joy of music,” he said. “It gives one a sense of achievement and builds confidence. Self-discipline grows, time management skills can improve and leadership and teamwork skills develop.”

He said it was also known that playing music could reduce stress, lower blood pressure and help to calm anxiety. “It also improves memory, abstract reasoning, fine motor dexterity, posture and co-ordination. And through playing music our brains are actually physically altered and new connections are built between the synapses of the cerebral cortex, which plays a key role in all things relating to attention, perception, awareness, thought, memory, language and consciousness.”

Mr McDermott said this open night at the Derwent Valley Concert Band was available to prospective members of all abilities. “So, remember the date, Wednesday, March 1st, and grab the opportunity to turn up at the Memorial Hall and join a band. You’ll never look back!” he said.

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