Festival Prelude 'Ad Excel'

Festival Prelude ‘Ad Excel’ was commissioned by the AD Concert Band, from Solihull in the UK, to celebrate their 40th Anniversary in 2016. They gave the premiere on 8th October 2016 in their home town, conducted by their musical director, Trevor Farren.

The band is named after its founder, the late Arthur Doyle, formerly principal tuba player with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. The title, Ad Excel, is a play on words: it is Latin for ‘to excel’ but also celebrates the band’s anniversary as XL is 40 in Roman numerals.

The work opens with a bright fanfare with frequent changes of meter. This leads to a playful main subject, played first by woodwinds, followed by full band. A bridge passage leads to a legato second subject, played twice. The bridge passage returns to introduce the both main melodies in new keys and instrumentations before a coda, derived from the opening fanfare, brings the work to a close.