Musicians Unlimited Big Band

Big band in north east england

Musicians Unlimited Big Band, The Story So Far. By Mick Donnelly

Award winning Big Band Musicians Unlimited was founded in 1989 and since then have gone from strength to strength. Forming such a group was inspired and greatly assisted by a core of very talented musicians I had been fortunate enough to meet when I returned to the North East of England.

The band hit the radio waves for the first time on local Radio Cleveland with a performance at the Billingham Forum in 1992. Musicians Unlimited became an overnight success...

In 1997, after hundreds of concerts, Musicians Unlimited won the prestigious gold award in the Boosey and Hawkes national big band competition. Also, trumpet player Ray Harley won the Musicians Union Outstanding Musician Trophy in the 2001 BBC National Big Band Competition. Ray, who played lead trumpet for many years with MU was featured on ‘My Funny Valentine’ a track from our second album ‘Live at the Studio’ and was the track that earned him the award. MU have 3 albums out at present and you can find out more, on this website.

 Musicians Unlimited have also performed at a substantial number of Charity events ...


...The Mayor of Hartlepool`s Charity Floral Ball in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000 and 2001
... for Arthritis Care in North England in 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999,2000, 2001and 2002
...Sunday Funday for Hartlepool Hospice 22nd March 1998
...Butterwick Hospice Charity Dance 1999, 2000, 2001.2002, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010
...Teesside Hospice Charity Concert at Middlesbrough Little Theatre in April 1998
...Alice House Hospice Hartlepool Concert in dedication of Brian Mulcahy in April 2000 at the Staincliffe Hotel in Seaton Carew and a Concert at the Mayfair in Seaton Carew in September 1998
...Elwick Millennium Association Bigband Concert at the Billingham Forum at February 17, 1999 and a Summer Ball at Hartlepool Historic Quay in June 1999
...Russ Nicholson Music Scholarship Trust supporting local young musicians in 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994 and 1995
...McKenzie House Doctors Surgery Benevolent Fund Concert in Aid of Kip Heron in April 1998 at the Borough Hall in Hartlepool
...Salvation Army Concert in Aid of Kip Heron in April 1998

Our home at present is The Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool were we perform every Sunday lunchtime from 12 noon till 3.00pm
In our 21st year MU has about twenty regular members and plays music spanning from Duke Ellington, Stan Kenton, Woody Herman and Count Basie to Glen Miller and Frank Sinatra songs. The audience comes from literally all ages. People from their late teens into their eighty`s come together on an Sunday afternoon and enjoy the sound of this unique band. I am grateful to the audiences who fill our venues, and have been so generous with their encouragement and support over the years.

Mick Donnelly


 

 

 

 

 

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