Brass Blast!

Brass Blast is our weekly after school class in East Edinburgh. It began in September 2016 as an experiment, testing the idea of teaching trumpet & trombone in a large group setting. We welcomed a range of abilities, but had a specific focus on starting new players from scratch. We’re grateful to the Wash House (aka Portobello Community Centre) and Awards for All for supporting our pilot phase. 

nearly 3 years on, the project has gone from strength to strength. We have an Improvers’ group with a dozen committed players – some who already played and had their own instrument, and some who started with us back in 2016/17. They meet on Tuesdays after school at Edinburgh College Milton Road. Gigs to date include The Edinburgh Big Beach Busk, Porty Village Show, Art Walk Porty Prom Parade, Bellfield Official Launch Party, Refugee Community Kitchen Benefit, Bridgend Farmhouse Family Fun Day, Tradfest with Fun Fiddle, Tinderbox Hub shows, The Sunday Get-Down at the Jaffle Joint – plus plenty of busking on Porty Prom and High St for Halloween, Christmas and the Edinburgh Marathon! 

And in January 2019 we were delighted to announce our brand new Brass Blast Beginners’ group – more info here!

Brass Blast works with the street band model, which is inclusive, informal and fun. Learning by ear, playing from memory and working to each player’s strengths. As well as receiving expert instruction in technique, embouchure and tone, players are developing a whole range of skills associated with playing in a band. Brass Blast performs regularly on Portobello Promenade, they choose their own material and are becoming passionate instrumental players! Improvers classes are £8.50 per week for a 90-minute session, with reductions offered for those on low incomes. Beginners classes are FREE!

If you’re interested in taking part, and finding out about our plans for 2019, you can sign up here and we’ll be in touch. 

A bit of background:

We are passionate about broadening access to music opportunities, and increasing the numbers of young people that play brass instruments. Through our work with community street bands across Scotland, Marcus has developed a unique teaching system for groups of mixed ability players. Brass Blast offers something new and exciting in Edinburgh – affordable group brass tuition with a focus on street band playing. We have good links with other exciting youth music projects across the city, and will collaborate with existing groups so that Brass Blast players can be part of Edinburgh’s wider youth music scene.


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