Childs to conduct NZ National Band
Dr Robert Childs appointed MD of National Band of New Zealand for 2013/14 tours.

The Brass Band Association of New Zealand has announced the appointment of Dr Robert Childs as Musical Director of the National Brass Band of New Zealand.

The inaugural National Band was formed in 1953, going on to tour the UK and famously winning the British Open under the baton of Ken Smith.

It has been brought together periodically every since as a showcase of the very best brass and percussion talent New Zealand has to offer, and regularly undertakes tours all over the banding world—but until now, always under a leading home-grown conductor.

Speaking exclusively to 4BR before he flew out from Heathrow to judge at the Swiss Open, Dr Childs told spoke of his delight at the being asked to direct the band.

"It’s a real honour to be able to accept the invitation to conduct the National Brass Band of New Zealand.

I have had a wonderful time on each of my visits to the country over the years and to be asked to follow in the musical footsteps of some of the greatest musicians the country has ever produced is quite something."

Bob revealed that he will be flying back to New Zealand early in the New Year to start the audition process of potential players as well as work on preparations for a domestic tour and a proposed ground breaking visit to China.

"I have been so impressed by the standard of performers in New Zealand, that I think the auditions will be the hardest part of the job. I’m really looking forward to working with a highly professional organisation and being able to add to the great history of a wonderful band."

Dave Dobson, the spokesperson for the Brass Band Association of New Zealand added: "This is the first occasion on which a Musical Director from the United Kingdom has been appointed.

It is particularly pleasing that such an eminent Musical Director as Dr Robert Childs has accepted the position. Although arrangements are not yet finalised it is intended the band will give concerts in New Zealand and China."
21 Sep 2012