Marching and Cycling Band HHK

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The MaC-Band HHK logo

The Marching and Cycling Band HHK was a marching band from Haarlem, The Netherlands and existed from 1964 until 2014, started by a fusion in 1964 of two anchestor bands: Kunstkring Apollo and Harmonie Crescendo under the name of Haarlems Harmonie Kapel (HHK). The band had a unique way of performing: marching and cycling, hence the name: "Marching and Cycling Band HHK".

The MaC-Band was a band that played music from the pop-, musical- and filmworld. They exercised weekly.

The band[edit]

Line up during a performance

On average the band hadbetween 20 and 25 performances a year, whereof the biggest part tookplace in the periods April - June and September - October. Rather the most performances were cycling, but also marching performances are executed.

During the winter season there were a few performances and therefore the repertoire was (partially) updated. Also, the music for the marching show of the new season was studied.

From 1995 until 2014, in the beginning of the season a so-called training weekend for the whole association was organised, in addition to practicing for the show that season in a different way. As of 2009 the band has its own YouTube-channel named MaCBandHHK where video's of the performances and other activities were published.[1]

Performing on a bicycle[edit]

Performing in Haarlem on the bicycle

In 1973 a member of the board, Bram Visser, got the idea to, just like Dutch military bands had done years before, start performing with the marching band on bicycles. The first performance of this nowadays well known band took place at the Grote Markt (central market square) during the March of Musicians of 1973. A yearly event that in those days took place in September in the evening. The performance was done on own and borrowed bicycles.

After some hesitation by the rest of the board and due to the enormous success of the performance it was decided to buy 41 bicycles. The bicycleplatoon existed for 41 years.

Through this way of making music the band gained fame in the Netherlands and abroad. Since those days the band was requested for many sorts of performances, from serenades to carnavalparades and international musical festivals. Often the band could be found in France, Belgium, Germany and The Netherlands. However the band also executed performances in England, Switzerland, Sweden and Luxembourg.


Performing at the Grote Markt in Haarlem

The HHK is founded in 1964 existing of a harmony orchestra, a marching band and a majorettes squad and was at the end of the 1960s one of the largest music association in Europe, with more than 200 members. The drumband started with natural instruments in the key of E-flat and percussion. The music was played on french horns, trumpets and sousaphones. The percussion consists of so-called march and / or snare drums, tenor drums and bass drums.

The harmony orchestra was a complete orchestra, including clarinets, trombones, trumpets and french horns. Each year the association gave a concert in the ConcertHall of Haarlem. Most of the evening was filled with music played by the harmony, but also the drumband and the majorettes gave a performance. Usually, the evening ended with a joint work, played by the harmony and drumband together.

In October 2010, a youth department started, named: "Music-Kids" and in 2012 the visual group with majorettes and twirls was extended with a colorguard group.

Special appearances[edit]

Performing during the Cruquiusfestival 2009

During the existence of the Marching and Cycling Band HHK there are a number of specific actions performed, including:

  • 2014: (Short) occurrence in the dutch movie "Pak van mijn Hart" (recorded in 2013).
  • 2012: Participated in the RTL4 Sketch comedy 'Wat als?' (What If?)
  • 2010: A special liberation item during Tattoo Delft.
  • 2010: Opening of the Tour de France in Rotterdam.
  • 2007: Opening of the European Championship Wheelchair basketball in Wetzlar (Germany).
  • 2004: 40-year anniversary with a performance on the water cycles during the Haarlem Sailing Days.
  • 2003: Opening of the A5 motorway (Netherlands) (on the bicycle).
  • 2002: Presentation of the new uniforms during the March of the Musicians.
  • 2001: First prize won by sending a report for the program 'Malende zaken' of TV Noord-Holland.
  • 1998: The RTL4-program 'Ga Toch Fietsen' (Go cycling) broadcasts a report about the performance of the Marching and Cycling Band HHK during the Flower Parade on Saturday April 25.
  • 1994: Opening of the Tour de France in Lille.
  • 1991: TV-Commercial for the Dutch National Trust.
  • 1989: Guestperformance at the French televisionshow 'Dimanche Martin'.

External links[edit]