The KwaZulu-Natal Youth Wind Band (KZNYWB) is a prestigious provincial symphonic wind orchestra made up of forty five talented young music students between the ages of 13 and 27.
One of South Africa’s premier youth ensembles, the KZN Youth Wind Band is made up of young musicians between the ages of 13 and 27 that are truly representative of the colourful cultural tapestry that makes up South Africa.It is considered one of South Africa’s finest youth wind bands and its members are given colours at school the same as any other provincial team.
The band has been in existence for over 40 years. In April 1977 a Youth Wind Band was established in Pietermaritzburg by Werner Dannewitz. This band grew in stature and in 1985 was given provincial status and officially named the Natal Youth Wind Band. In 1995 the name was changed appropriately to the KwaZulu-Natal Youth Wind Band in keeping with political transformation occurring in our country.
The KZNYWB is exceptionally proud of the fact that many members of the band come from previously disadvantage backgrounds, and have been exceptionally mentored into a bright musical future by the Durban Music School – to which the KZNYWB is affiliated.
Conducted by Russell Scott, the band has a varied repertoire of classic symphonic band pieces, as well as swing, pop, and film music, not to mention a fantastic real South African repertoire!
These incredibly inspiring young musicians are the prime example of the young passion that embodies the South African spirit.
The wind band has toured to many international destinations, Including Mauritius, Germany, Austria, the U.S.A. and England. Whilst on their 2009 tour to Austria, the band came first at the Vienna Youth and Music Festival and, most recently, won gold with the highest score at the New York Wind Band Festival hosted at the famous Carnegie Hall.
Russell Scott – Conductor
Russell Scott took over the baton of the KZN Youth Wind Band in the beginning of 2013, after the untimely and tragic passing of Werner Dannewitz, who had led the band for more than 20 years.
Mr Scott has been conducting the Durban City Orchestra for over 6 years, and, having been a previous member of the KZNYWB, has brought a wealth of knowledge, passion and an enthusiastic conducting style that has motived the band to newfound heights and opportunities.
His energy, as well as considerable experience working with young musicians, has moved the band forward into new spaces, including cornerstones pieces of the symphonic band repertoire as well as symphonic reductions and popular music.
Mr Scott is highly in demand in Durban KZN, conducting numerous ensembles in many formats all throughout the year. Having seen how music can really change lives and inspire, his real passion however, is in creating an environment where young musicians can achieve more than they ever thought possible. This can be seen in the incredibly high standard of the KZNYWB.