Irvine & Dreghorn’s Third Annual Slow Melody Contest and Concert – with Guest Soloist Lesley Poo


Saturday 1st June, 2013 – Irvine and Dreghorn’s Slow Melody Contest and Concert – with Lesley Poole

We are pleased to announce the third annual Irvine and Dreghorn Brass Band’s Slow Melody Contest and Concert. On Saturday 1 June, at Irvine’s Castlepark Community Centre, our Slow Melody Contest and Concert will take place.

We’re delighted to announce that local girl Lesley Poole (nee Howie), from the World Famous Foden’s Band will act as adjudicator and guest player for our Slow Melody Contest and Concert. Our concert will include a few solo spots, so come along and hear the master at work!

The contest (for Irvine and Dreghorn band members of all ages) will start at 3.30pm (Hall access from 3pm), and guests can listen to the entrants during the afternoon. At 6pm, dinner will be served to your table and the contest results, prize giving and concert featuring Lesley will follow this.

Tickets are £10 for adults, and £7 for children. This includes contest and concert entry, (with walk in, walk out access all day); one soft drink from the fully licensed bar which will be in operation all day; and a two course evening meal (vegetarian option available).

A concert only ticket is also available with entry available from 7pm. Concert only tickets are £6 for adults and £4 for kids.

Tickets can be bought from Kelda McMichael (07875 426329), Dawn Spence (07733142197) or from any band member. Tickets can also be bought via paypal (a surcharge of 50p per ticket will apply). – contact Kelda for more information on how to do this. Tickets must be paid for in advance (by Monday 27th May at the latest) to allow for catering and seating arrangements, but can be picked up at the ticket stand on the day.

About Lesley Poole:

Lesley Poole (nee Howie) started playing Tenor Horn at the age of 10 at her local school, Kilwinning Academy under the instruction of Alec McCutcheon. She even played with Irvine and Dreghorn Band many moons ago! She progressed quickly winning many awards and competitions, the most prestigious being the Scottish Schools Solo Championships in 1994 and 1995. She was the Principal Solo Horn player of the National Youth Brass Band of Scotland at this time.

In 1995 Lesley accepted a place at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester where she studied with Howard Snell and the likes. During this time she played with some of the Country’s top bands including Fodens, Marple and Wingates. She graduated from the RNCM with a BMus (Hons) and then went on to gain her postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) at the Manchester Metropolitan University. Lesley currently works in a Secondary School in Hyde as Head of Music.

Lesley’s career grew again in 1999 when she became the first female player of the famous Black Dyke Band on Principal Solo Horn, a position that enabled her to perform in various festivals and concerts around the world, including the Harrogate festival, Swiss Open Gala Concert, Eric Ball Centenary Concert and further afield at the Bermuda Arts Festival. Lesley has also performed with Peter Gabriel, James Morrison, The Beautiful South and Victoria Wood.

Lesley has visited America on a number of occasions, to play with the Brass Band of Battle Creek and more recently performing to great critical acclaim in the ITG festival. Lesley has also worked throughout Scandinavia and in February 2005 recorded the newly composed Horn Concerto by Elgar Howarth with the Eikanger Brass Band of Norway. In Easter 2005 Lesley gave a further two performances of the same Concerto as Guest Soloist with the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain.

As a soloist Lesley has had many new and exciting commissioned works, including one from leading brass band composer Philip Wilby who dedicated his Horn Concerto to Lesley. She is regularly asked to review articles for the British magazines and web sites. Recently Lesley was asked to write a chapter for ‘The Brass Players Cookbook’ which is currently storming America.

Lesley regularly works with young brass players across the country as Horn tutor for Brass Band Workshops. Lesley is currently the Tenor Horn tutor for the National Youth Brass Band of Scotland, the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain and the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain Children’s Band. Lesley currently works as the Professor of Tenor Horn at the Royal Northern College of Music and Chethams School of Music in Manchester alongside other universities throughout the country.

Lesley performs with a brass sextet of Professional players and regularly appears with the group and as a soloist.

Lesley is currently the Principal Horn player with one of the top brass bands in the world – Foden’s Band; which regularly appears at the top of the “World of Brass – World Rankings”. In 2012, Foden’s became double winners of both the National Championships and the British Open.

Lesley has been active for Besson as a clinician, performer and in instrument development for several years.

About Irvine and Dreghorn Brass:

Irvine and Dreghorn Brass band have been in existence since the early 70’s. At that time local brass teachers found that there were insufficient children or instruments at any one local school to form a brass band, but this could be achieved by bringing together children from different schools. Since then we have grown to a local band open to all. We are currently a second section band with the Scottish Brass Band Association and compete regularly at competitions and we also play regularly to crowds across Ayrshire, particularly in the Summer and Winter months. We are a registered Scottish charity.

We have an established youth initiative in place. This includes a training band and in addition, thanks to a Big Lottery Awards for All grant we have a beginners programme in place – AKA the Brasslets! If you are interested in joining the training band or Brasslets Beginners, please contact us for more information.


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