Hilgermissen – Last marches, polkas and battles. Together, we make music for the last time. The Hilgermisser Kolkmusikanten are looking forward to their performance on June 19 at 15:00 in the Kurpark in Bruchhausen-Vilsen. But then it’s over. The group, founded in 1984, is falling apart. Trumpeter and treasurer Reinhard Henkel talks to the district newspaper about the causes and looks at the decades that have passed.
The history of the Hilgermisser Kolkmusikanten began in 1979, but at that time they did not have their current name. Herbert and Hartmut Henkel and Michael Müller joined the Wechold trombone choir and learned to play the instrument there. But instead of just singing church songs, they also wanted to indulge in traditional brass band music. The late Heinz Bösche took the three under his wing and rehearsed with them so that the first performance could be held in 1980. “Then it all started and members of the trombone choir as well as outsiders joined, and the group soon grew to ten to twelve,” says Reinhard Henkel, who joined the ranks in 1985, from Wechold, Eitzendorf, Ubbendorf , Schierholz, Heesen and Mehringen.
A year before joining the team, the name Hilgermisser Kolkmusikanten appeared. “Hilgermissen is situated on the Kolk River, a tributary of the Weser. They also exercised there quite often. It was just right, ”explains Henkel.
In the following years, the position of music director was taken over by, among others Rudolf Boss and Lothar Kittlaus. In 2003, Hermann Heimbucher from Scholen, known by many as “Hüttenwirt”, appeared on the stage. “He taught us to read and count music correctly,” the passionate trumpeter recalls. In the best of times, Hilgermisser Kolkmusikanten’s diary was full to the brim: they gave 25 to 30 performances a year. Equipped with a tuba, drum, baritone, trumpet, saxophone, clarinet and tenor horn, they delighted fans at birthdays, harvest festivals and harvest festivals, Loger Musiktage and “Hüttenwirt” in Scholen. Reinhard Henkel has a particularly fond memories of the joint concert series with the Hoya choir that lasted over a year. “It was really fun,” she says. But the performances at the beginning of the season at the Gasthaus Kleindienst have always been an absolute highlight. “People were really crazy,” says Henkel. Moreover, the group demonstrated its skills to seniors from various care institutions. “When ladies and gentlemen heard the cuts and recalled their memories, some did indeed have a few tears running down their faces. It was very touching and of course it increased the motivation even more, ”the treasurer recalls a very special moment.
Over the years, however, less and less appeared. In addition, the Hilgermisser Kolkmusikanten had to cope with a significant loss of members, not least because of age. In order to be able to give concerts at all, the troupe even had to “borrow” the musicians. Therefore, in 2015, for the first time, they came close to a solution. However, the merger with Schützenkapelle Kleinenborstel was able to prevent this move. “Thanks to them we got concerts at Brokser-Markt-Tuesday. There has always been a crowd of people, continues the treasurer. However, with the merger, the average age has also risen sharply. The relentless attempts to recruit young people to make music together have largely failed due to lack of time. “At this age, they usually have different priorities,” says the trumpeter.
The pandemic has not improved the situation. “Some members were afraid of the risk of contamination and stopped coming, which is perfectly understandable. The others have come to a complete stop, ”explains Henkel. With earnings close to zero during the Corona period, the group also decided not to “borrow” any more musicians. “One thing led to another,” says Reinhard Henkel.
But on June 19, Hilgermisser Kolkmusikanten will perform for the last time. Then they want to present the guests selected songs from their repertoire of over 70 songs. “After a two-year hiatus, you almost miss being back on the stage. We missed it and we are looking forward to this day – says the treasurer. But then it’s over. According to Henkel, some members will continue to play in other bands, “but the name Hilgermisser Kolkmusikanten will cease to exist”.