Combined Districts Concert Band was formed on 30th March 1987. Originally known as Northern Districts Band, the name was changed in 1989 to more accurately reflect the metropolitan regions from which members are drawn. It was incorporated under this name in September 1989.
Predominantly a youth band, the current membership is approximately thirty-five players ranging in age from fourteen years old. New members are always welcome with younger players given every encouragement and opportunity to develop their musical skills. The Band is a self funding body, charging a membership fee, but has enjoyed some sponsorship and support from various companies from time to time.
The Band has an extensive repertoire ranging from old standards and light popular to the latest original compositions. The Band has three main performance styles: a concert performance, for indoor or outdoor venues; a standing static performance, suitable for appearances at sporting events, shows or festivals; and a marching band which performs in street parades and public events such as ANZAC Day parades and the Perth Christmas Pageant. Public engagements over the years have included appearances at the Perth Royal Show, Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club, Dancesport WA Championships and many concert performances at various venues throughout Perth.
The Western Australian Band Association State Championships are normally held in May each year. The Combined Districts Concert Band has held the title of Western Australian ‘A’ Grade Concert Band Champions from 1995 to 2004. In recent years the band has not participated in the state championships.
The Band endeavours to undertake a tour every few years and in January 1996, completed a tour to Devonport, Tasmania and the Gold Coast, Queensland. January 1999 saw the Band complete a very successful tour of New Zealand, presenting concert performances on both islands in places such as Christchurch, Auckland and Rotorua. A successful tour was also held in January 2005, in which the band members visited various parts of Queensland; the Sunshine Coast, Brisbane and the Gold Coast, and Sydney. In 2008 the band toured Singapore and Malaysia, performing at such places as the KL Twin Towers.
The current Music Director of the band is Glyn MacDonald. Since his first gig at age 16, Glyn has performed in Canada, England, Rome, Scotland and Wales and throughout Australia. In 1997 Glyn completed a degree in Classical Trombone at the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) but his passion for jazz still burned so he then went on to complete a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Piano at WAAPA. In March of 2001 Glyn travelled to Vancouver Canada where he performed at the Vancouver Jazz Festival and was chosen as artist of the month by CBC radio who featured Glyns music. He also recorded three albums including one with his own trio Live @The Cellar: Glyn MacDonald Trio. Glyn has performed with James Morrison, Andy Firth, Rufus Reid, Tom Burlinson, Terrel Stafford and with many of Perth’s top Jazz performers including Libby Hammer, Bronwynn Sprogowski, Jamie Ohlers, Matt Jodrel and Carl Mackey. Glyn has also performed in Perth bands such as the “Perth Jazz Orchestra”, the “WASO Big Band”, “Backlash”, “Manteca”, “Hip Mo Toast”, “Salamander” and 2013 WA Fringe award winners Stratosfunk. Glyn has recorded many albums in Perth including Backlash’s “Into the Rubble” which featured three of his original tunes and “The Australian Songbook” with the Hip Mo Toast Big Band. Glyn has also recorded two albums of all original material “Self Titled 2004” and “Birth 2009”. Both albums have received rave reviews, airplay and distribution in Japan. In 2006 Glyn was invited to join the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts to join the Jazz and Contemporary faculties. He also travelled to Rome with Salamander to perform at the Villa Cillemontana Jazz Festival. In 2009 the Glyn MacDonald Group was invited to perform at the Brisbane Valley Jazz Festival and was featured in the end of festival party. In 2011 the “Glyn MacDonald Group” featuring Matthew Styles (saxophone) recorded a live album in partnership with ABC Jazz and performed at the Beijing International Jazz Festival performing two shows to sell out crowds. Glyn’s trio was also chosen to perform at the State Reception at Government House for the visit of Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh. Later that year the trio was picked to perform at the state reception for the Prince of Belgium. In 2012 Glyn toured Thailand performing in the Bangkok and Samui Jazz Festivals with European group the Cathrine Legardh Group. Glyn currently teaches at WAAPA in the Jazz and Contemporary courses lecturing and teaching jazz and contemporary piano students as well as classes in theory, aural and improvisation. 2013 has seen Glyn record a live album at the Ellington and concerts with UK saxophonist Andy Scott as well as a sold out show at the Regal Theatre for Stratosfunks Soul Train show.