Wesley Thompson, Associate Conductor

 hoto Credit:  Peter Hellberg

Wesley has over 40 years’ experience as a euphonium player, playing mostly with the 1st Old Boys’ Band. He has played in many championship section contests in Northern Ireland, 5 European Championships, 2 Grand Shields, 7 All England International Masters’ and the Scottish Championships.  In his early playing years, he had many successes as a soloist in music festivals and solo contests, including winning the Brass Band League solo championships.  He has also won the best instrumentalist award at the North of Ireland Bands Association Championships.  He retired from regular band playing in 2015.

Wesley has been involved in teaching brass instruments for more than 35 years, mostly on a part-time basis.  Since retiring from local government in 2010, he has been in much demand as a teacher, and is currently the brass tutor at Aquinas Diocesan Grammar School and Wellington College Belfast, low brass tutor at Grosvenor and Bangor Grammar Schools, and euphonium and baritone tutor at the City of Belfast School of Music.

Wesley is a member of the National Association of Brass Band Conductors.  In addition to attending a number of conducting workshops delivered by Peter Bassano, Lt. Col. Chris Davies, Mike Fowles and Ian Porthouse, he has attended two residential courses on brass band conducting and creative programming, with Allan Withington, Robin Dewhurst and Soli Brass, in the Netherlands.

Wesley has conducted a number of brass bands but has had most success with Comber Silver Band, where he has been conductor since 2010.  In that time he has led the band to 1st place in both the North of Ireland Bands Association and Brass Band League 3rd section contests a number of times.  In addition he works with a number of school brass bands and ensembles.

Wesley took up the position of Associate Conductor with Downshire Brass in January 2016, having taken the band in a number of rehearsals and engagements over the previous 18 months.  He is looking forward to working with Michael Alcorn and Downshire Brass, and is excited by the opportunities and challenges which lie ahead.