• Tue. Nov 28th, 2023

North East Connected

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Brass Players call out for Durham Miners Gala performance

Nordestinos play durham miners gala

People in the North East can join a groundbreaking drumming and dance group for a performance at this year’s Durham Miners Gala. 

 Crook-based Jack Drum Arts are collaborating with Durham Brass Festival and Redhills and looking for brass players of all ages, from Grade 3 standard upwards, to perform in its community carnival parade performance group, Nordestinos.   

Nordestinos mix North-East Brazilian style drumming and dance with North-East folk songs and received fantastic public feedback after their debut performance at Durham Miners Gala in 2022 when they marched in with Rough Lea Lodge. 

 Jack Drum is looking for enthusiastic brass players interested in joining a unique team of community participants. Current performers are from all walks of life and range from teens to those in their 70s. 

Who are Nordestinos?

Nordestinos is currently a passionate group of around 80 people who touch the hearts and minds of audiences nationwide. Although their repertoire is rooted firmly in the North East folk traditions, they have bookings for 2023, including Durham Miners’ Gala and Brazilica Liverpool. Nordestinos Carnival Arts is a project bringing together children, young people and families alongside professional musicians, artists and dancers to research, design, produce and perform a new Samba Reggae Bloco working in partnership with 3 existing community samba bands; County Durham based ‘Runaway Samba’ and ‘Baque de Ogum and Gateshead based “DrumDin”.  Unique to the project is the melding of traditional Brazilian music and dance from the north east of Brazil with the rich, deeply rooted traditions of folk songs and dance from the north east of England; combining samba reggae with folk music for a series of fun, engaging bloco style performances for communities across the North. 

Alongside the performance dates, you must be available on 17th or 18th June for rehearsals at a city centre Durham venue.

Who are Jack Drum?

Jack Drum Arts is a sustainable, locally-based social enterprise providing cultural opportunities for communities in County Durham and the wider region through various workshops, courses, theatre, music-making and outdoor events. Their mission is to increase access to arts activities and cultural events for people of all ages, particularly those who face barriers to engagement, by delivering high quality, engaging, innovative and transformative arts opportunities that promote self-expression, wellbeing, learning and community cohesion.

What is Durham Miners Gala?

The Durham Miners’ Gala returned in 2022 after a three-year absence due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It was the biggest Gala in decades as more than 200,000 people packed the streets of Durham and the Racecourse ground. A generation on from the colliery closures, more than 60 Durham miners banners and more than 50 brass bands participated.

Hosted by the Durham Miners Association (DMA) since 1871, the Gala is the world’s greatest celebration of community, international solidarity, and working-class culture. It is a unique and inspiring spectacle. The 137th Durham Miners Gala will take place on Saturday 8 July 2023.

Durham Brass Festival

The project is co-funded by Durham Brass Festival which will run 9th – 16th July. Taking inspiration from the brass band heritage of County Durham, the festival weaves together all musical genres into a vibrant and entertaining ten-day festival across the County. With headline performances in iconic locations from some of the UK’s finest artists, to school gigs, and an inclusive engagement programme, we are ready to celebrate with BRASS.

BRASS is a key part of Durham County Council’s festivals and events programme and reflects the local authority’s commitment to cultural-led regeneration. As well as boosting the economy and raising the county’s reputation as a cultural destination, BRASS aims to bring communities together to create unforgettable experiences for people of all ages.

How to get involved

 To get involved, please email helen@jackdrum.co.uk, or by calling Jack Drum Arts office on 01388 765002. Please ensure you let them know which instrument you play, your level of playing and/or performance experience and your availability for Miners Gala on Saturday 8th July.

There will be further opportunities to also join the group for BrazilIca Festival on Saturday 5th August. 

 NB: If you are under 18 years of age we will need parental consent.