Next weekend’s appearance at the Nationals Finals at the Royal Albert Hall will be the final curtain call for long serving Solo horn player, Nathan Waterman after making the difficult decision during the summer to step down from a playing capacity with the band to pursue his growing conducting interests.
Nathan first joined what was then the Rigid Container Group Band on Solo horn at the age of 21 back in 1991, a seat he held for 7 years before taking a long term break from the band in 1998. Nathan would later rejoin GUS in 2007 where he has since notched up an impressive 20 years of total service to the band, with this year's national finals being his 14th appearance at the RAH with GUS.
When Nathan handed in his notice over the Summer he was happy to sit down the line for the remainder of his tenure if a suitable replacement could be found and the band were very thankful that came from within the section, with Simon Smith coming forward to retake the solo horn seat. Simon, now in his 21st consecutive year with the band himself joined in 1998 and was Solo horn with the band for some 12 years before moving down the line as work commitments took over.
A Band spokesman commented,
“When you have such a dedicated player as Nathan occupy a solo seat in a band for so long especially playing at the high level Nathan always prided himself on, it can be difficult to imagine anyone else in the role but the band are very fortunate to have had Simon Smith happily sitting down the line ready to step up to the mark when asked. This effectively means that for the last 28 years only two players have occupied the Solo horn chair with the band! Simon has already reminded everyone that he hasn’t lost his soloistic flare having sat on Solo horn for our last two concerts and being a featured soloist at our most recent.”
On his resignation Nathan commented,
“GUS has been the biggest single impacting event of my life, apart from my wife and kids obviously! Much more important to me than my professional career or indeed any other musical avenue I may have chosen. My years with the band have engendered musical growth in me I could never have realised elsewhere and friendships that are not only lifelong but have shaped me in such positive ways over the years. I'd like to give a special mention to John Berryman who has been both a close friend and mentor throughout my playing career”
Nathan will remain as an active trustee of the band and everyone at GUS would like to wish him the best of luck with his recent appointment as MD with the band that started it all for Nathan, the Thrapston Town band.