The proposal for Cross Border, Derry/Dublin combined workshops and fundraising concerts arose from two separate but related events. Siobhan and Brendan Devlin played in the Britannia Band in Derry and then moved to Dublin where they now play with the St James’ and CWU Bands. Dean William Morton, the former Dean of St Columb’s Cathedral in Derry and a longtime supporter of the Britannia Band moved to become Dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral in Dublin; and so the idea of a massed bands cross border cross community project took shape.
The vision is to promote cross cultural engagement in a musical environment to facilitate musicians from the two communities to learn from and about each other, experience different conductors and deliver enjoyable musical events in Dublin and Derry while doing what they love best: making music for others to enjoy.
ST. JAMES’ BAND
St. James’ Brass and Reed Band Dublin is considered to be the oldest Band in Ireland, dating from the 1700’s, and has played at many historic events before and after the formation of the State. The band comes from a strong Nationalist / Republican tradition. It continues as a vibrant multicultural group welcoming all musicians seeking an outlet for their musical talents.
THE COMMUNICATION WORKERS UNION BAND
The Communication Workers Union Band has a long and proud history and is the only remaining Union linked band in Dublin. They have had multiple collaborations with St James’ Band over the decades.
THE BRITANNIA CONCERT BAND
The Britannia Band is the oldest band in Northern Ireland dating back to the 1860’s and is a cross community multicultural band. The band comes from a strong Unionist/Loyalist tradition.