Bayside Brass History

Bayside Brass, previously known as the Wynnum Manly Citizen’s Band, is situated in the Bayside area of Brisbane’s Moreton Bay. Its history can be dated back to the depression days of the early 1930’s when two bands performed around the Wynnum and Manly area. One being the Manly Concert Band, under the direction of Mr. Harold Walmsley, and the other being the Moreton Bay Band, generally made up of Junior Boys, under the direction of Mr. Reg Dearlove. Both Bands were based in the district – Manly (RSL) Community Hall and General Gordon Club on Florence Street, Wynnum, respectively. Both Bands enjoyed success during this period. The Manly Concert Band won a minor band contest just four months after being formed and obtained third place in the D Grade Section of the Australian Championships at Maryborough in Easter 1932. Mr. Walmsley was still to attain his majority and was the Tenor Horn Champion at the same contest. At the onset of World War Two, both bands broke up. Returning members of both bands formed a single band after World War Two.  From 1954 the band was known as the Wynnum Manly and Citizens Band.

The Band had its own Band Shell built on the foreshore near Cambridge Parade. Following its demolition a new shell was built at the Darling Point Reserve (George Clayton Park) in 1967. This Shell holds many trophies the Band has won over the years. In January 1999, two old uniforms were given to the Band and these will also be displayed sometime in the future.

The band has participated regularly at local and regional Band Competitions. In the 1999 State Band Championships held at the Gold Coast, the Junior Band, under the baton of Henk Dogger, won all events entered (including a hymn and concert selection) and the Senior Band won the Stage March and was awarded third position overall in the D Grade Section. The Band tries to support not just the State Competitions, but also local events organized by other bands such as the “Best of Brass” Championships at Maryborough and the Nambour Competition “Sunshine Brass”.

Mr. Corey Clarke joined the band as Musical Director in 1999. Corey had a wealth of experience for his young years, being a champion Euphonium player. Corey had conducted several junior bands in and around Brisbane, and the Wynnum Manly Band progressed steadily under his baton.

Success at the 2001 National Band Championships, held in Brisbane, was proof of this. The Band competing in D Grade, was 3rd in the Test piece, and won the Own Choice, being placed equal 1st with Maryborough Excelsior Band overall. Corey was the youngest Bandmaster to take the podium. This occasion saw the Band members in a new uniform – blue long sleeved shirts with matching ties – along with a stage name change to Bayside Brass. The incorporated name of Wynnum Manly Citizens Band was retained.

Shortly after this, the band entered a naming rights sponsorship with Yellow Cabs Queensland, one of only two such arrangements in Australia. This allowed us to compete in the 2002 Geelong National Championships. Following successes in competitions of that year, the band was promoted to C grade and competed with distinction in the Newcastle Nationals 2003. Easter 2004 saw the band in Bundaberg for the Queensland Championships. Here the band was placed 1st overall after much hard work and dedication from the players and, of course Corey.

When Corey moved to pursue business interests the band was fortunate in securing the talents of Major Ivan Cocking, one of our trombonists, as Musical Director. Ivan had served with distinction in the Australian Defence Force including a period as Officer Commanding/Music Director of The Band Of The Second Military District, Sydney, now the Australian Army Band Sydney. He is a familiar face around South East Queensland having worked in the education system for a number of years, leading many local bands and appearing at the Brisbane Jazz Club.

Following Ivan’s retirement in 2014 the search was on for a new Musical Director. We discovered that our next MD was already sitting among us as solo cornet. Jenny Owens, whose family have a long history with the band, was duly appointed as Musical Director in July  2014.

The Band caters for all Brass and Percussion players of any age and an acceptable standard.

Six members of the Band hold National Band Council twenty five years of service badges and recently, our Librarian, Mrs. Jocelyn Owens who has been a member of the Wynnum Manly Citizen’s Band since 1973, was awarded a Queensland Band Association Long Service Badge.

The Band is very active in the local community especially helping out for community functions. We perform regularly at the Bandshell, George Clayton Park, Wynnum Esplanade, and the Senior Band participates every year in the local and city marches on Anzac Day. The Senior Band also participates in the Bayside Spring Parade. Recently, we have held concerts both in the Wynnum District and Redlands District much to the delight of audiences. The band marches behind Drum Major, Mark Austin.

Feel free to contact us using any of the contact details listed under the Contact Us tab at the top of the page.  Don’t forget to like our facebook page as well!

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