Soprano Cornet Dai Roberts

As the name suggests, Dai is a native of Wales, from Newport in Gwent, where he played soprano cornet for 13 years with the Rogerstone Band. He also played soprano cornet in the National Youth Band of Great Britain alongside many other now famous names in Brass Bands.

Eventually an invitation from the Midlands based William Davis Construction Group Band enticed Dai away from his homeland. He was to occupy the soprano seat in that band for 20 years, at one point being their longest serving member, playing in all the major brass band national contests and taking part in several continental tours undertaken by the band. He has also often been called upon to play with some of the top brass bands in this country.

Following a short break from playing, Dai was invited to take over the soprano chair at Derwent Brass and at the first contest he played with the band was awarded the prize for Best Soprano Cornet. Over the years, Dai has been recognised and regularly featured as a soloist in concerts, recordings and radio broadcasts.

Repiano Cornet Mandy Holling

Resume to follow

2nd Cornet Dan Hudson

Dan kick started his playing career at the tender age of just six years and quickly progressed to become the principal cornet of the Desford Junior Band. His first contest experience was with the Desford band in 2001 before joining the Unity band where he quickly progressed from the Junior to Senior band. In 2004 he then joined the Leicester Co-op band where he remained part of the solo cornet line up for an impressive 11 years and played a key role in their significant rise from the 4th to Championship Section (as of 2016). A couple of special memories for Dan during his time there also include the band being awarded the runner-up prize at the 2nd section national finals in 2011, winning the Championship Section of the Weston Supermare contest in 2014 and being part of the winning quartet in the LBBA Open competition.

Away from the world of brass music, Dan is quite the scientist having graduated in 2011 with a Masters Degree in Chemistry and now works as an Analytical Chemist for a leading pharmaceutical company. The chemistry certainly clicked into place when he accepted the opportunity to join Derwent Brass in June 2015 with Dan's positive attitude tying-in well with the band's ambitions; for many years he held the Repiano Cornet seat in the band and is a regular player in the band's 10pc ensemble.

2nd Cornet Emily Bramble

Emily is an experienced concert player, previously holding Principal Cornet seats at Cockerton and Darlington Youth Bands, Tutti Trumpet at the Darlington Youth Brass band and more recently was Solo Cornet with the Cockerton Silver Prize Brass Band.

Whilst completing a Master Degree in Chemical Engineering, Emily took a sabbatical from brass banding, but managed to keep her lip in as the Principal Trumpet for the Heriot Watt Orchestra. Certainly a highlight in Emily’s playing career, is performing the ‘Last Post’ at the Menin Gate Memorial, Ypres whilst on a tour of Belgium.

Emily joined the backrow team of Derwent Brass in May 2017 and is an active trustee on the committee.

3rd Cornet Alan Nelson

Resume to follow

3rd Cornet Rachel Beckett

Rachel began playing the cornet at the age of 13 and went on to read a BMus Hons at Lancaster University before her postgraduate studies at Reading University. Rachel now works as a Head of Music and prides herself in her passion for music education and leading a thriving department.

After a sabbatical from performing, Rachel rekindled her love for the cornet and brass band music following a visit to the Derwent Brass band room and joined the back row in Autumn 2015.

3rd Cornet Jennifer Marsden

Jennifer began playing at senior school in the brass band, wind band and orchestra with the occasional part in the school musical productions. She went onto join the City of Derby Youth Band and then the City of Derby Band playing Cornet and Flugel Horn giving her the opportunity to travel extensively through Europe and Canada. After leaving she then went on to play with Neville Brass ensemble.

Jennifer is proud to have been one of the founder members after the amalgamation of Neville Brass and Davis Derby Band to form Derwent Brass. Initially playing Cornet, Jennifer also spent some time on Flugel and was often featured as a soloist. After a short sabbatical the band bug bit again and she returned to Derwent Brass on Cornet, this time on the back row which she thoroughly enjoys.

Stay up to date with Derwent Brass

Become a Friend of Derwent Brass to get all the news, concert details and early booking offers straight to your inbox