The Westernport Regional Band is a community based band that regularly performs throughout the Westernport Area and the Mornington Peninsula. The band performs a wide range of music that has evolved from the jazz tradition including big band, swing, latin, funk and rock. The members of the band span a wide variety of ages and experience. The band is a non-auditioning band and we welcome new members of all standards throughout the year.
The instrumentation of the band follows the standard line up for a jazz big band, a section of trumpets, trombones, saxophones (alto, tenor and baritone) and a rhythm section comprised of guitar, piano, bass and drums.
We do not have a set maximum for any section and have inclusive policy of everyone playing together. We also strongly welcome and encourage flute and clarinet players to add colour to our sound and for the few occasions that we perform concert band repertoire.
The band is a not for profit organisation however a modest annual fee is charged to members to cover the costs of sheet music, insurances, etc.
The band performs an extremely wide variety of music from older jazz standards from composers such as Count Basie and Neil Hefti, through to more modern swing charts from Sammy Nestico and Gordon Goodwin. From relaxed Bossa Novas to burning Sambas, funk classics from James Brown to today’s commercial radio hits adapted for big band, the band prides itself on being able to authentically perform many different styles of music and have a lot of fun while doing it.
THE BAND DIRECTORS
The band is overseen by two musical directors, Alistair Neil and Ian Oldstein
Alistair runs the Development Band section from 6:30pm to 7:45pm with Ian Oldstein running the Senior Band from 8pm to 9:30pm
Alistair completed his Bachelor of Music (Trumpet) at Monash University in 2006 studying across both the Classical and Improvisational fields. Upon completing his degree Alistair has taught at several schools across the Mornington Peninsula at both Primary and Secondary level.
A passionate brass teacher, Alistair returned to Monash University in 2012 to complete his Graduate Diploma of Education (Secondary) and has since continued teaching, conducting and performing in a number of varied settings.
Ian is a highly enthusiastic and passionate band leader and has been associated with the Westernport Regional Band for a number of years. A multi-instrumentalist, he brings with him a wealth of experience in big band music and an ability to bring out the best in each player.
Ian’s strength lies in the ability to choose the right repertoire and soloists at the right times to challenge the band without becoming overwhelmed. Ian has a strong affinity for the band to play the actual arrangements that the great band leaders of the past (such as Count Basie) used. High energy, upbeat rehearsal with a focus on the finer details and masses of fun is Ian’s trademark.