Durham band picks up awards

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DURHAM County Big Band has picked up awards at the Great North Big Band Festival.

The band, directed by Shaune Eland, scooped prizes at this year’s festival held at Sunderland University, adjudicated by Paul Jones from the BBC’s Big Band and Mick Donnelly, tenor saxophonist.

Guitarist Robbie Chapman-Thong, 18, was awarded Best Soloist in the youth section, and the Big Band was awarded the adjudicators’ special award for Best Piece Performance for Invitation.