Shirley Band young tuba star to play with National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain


Shirley Band

Shirley Tuba Star to play at Barbican Centre, London

A budding teenage tuba star from Shirley is to play at London's acclaimed Barbican Centre with the 80-strong National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain.

Neve Lawrence, 16, a tuba player with Shirley Band, has successfully passed her audition for the 80-strong National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain (NYBB), which will play on 22 April at London's Barbican Centre.

The NYBB is conducted by the Grammy award-winning conductor, Bramwell Tovey, Musical Director of of the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra. She will also accompany two of the London Symphony Orchestra's (LSO) star players - Philip Cobb, principal trumpet, and Peter Moore, Co-Principal Trombone. Entry to the band is by audition only.

Neve, a pupil at St. Peter's Catholic School in Solihull, will be joining the NYBB for its week-long Easter residential course at Rutland's Uppingham School. In addition to the Barbican Centre concert, Neve will perform with the band at concerts in Uppingham and in Cambridge.

Neve, who recently took her grade 7 tuba exam, started playing when she was nine years old, after joining a workshop led by Coleshill Town Band. Also, a member of Fodens Youth Band in Cheshire, Neve passed her audition for the NYBB last year. She also attends monthly workshops at Manchester's Royal Northern College of Music, led by tuba virtuoso, Les Neish.

Neve Lawrence said: "I'm delighted to have been accepted by the NYBB, it's such an honour. Performing at the Barbican Centre with two of the best brass players in the world is like a dream come too. We're also going to be giving the world-premiere of some music by Gavin Higgins, who has previously written music for BBC's Last Night of the Proms too, so it is going to be really special."

Young brass and percussion players from the Midlands wishing to audition for the band can attend one of the regional audition and open days on 11 April, 25 July, 1 August and 4 November.

For more information about forthcoming concerts or on how to audition for the band, go to