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Harrogate’s Musical Talents Celebrated At Young Musician Of The Year Competition

Published by Ashville College on Friday 23rd of June 2023

Pupils have showcased the best in home-grown musical talent as a Harrogate school welcomed the return of its annual Young Musician of the Year competition.
For the first time since the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, children from Ashville College performed a wide array of modern and classical music in a bid to take home the Berger-Clarke Cup.

The silverware, purchased by the school in 2019, commemorates two long-serving music teachers who both retired at the end of the 2018/19 academic year: Paula Berger and Nick Clarke. The award is given to the overall winner of the Young Musician competition.

In addition to the Berger-Clarke Cup, awards were presented for best vocal performance and best instrumental performance.

The competition was adjudicated by David Dixon, a professional percussionist who has played in many leading UK ensembles in a range of genres, as well as being a secondary school music teacher for 29 years.

The winners were announced in front of an audience of parents, families and school staff.

The award for best vocal performance and overall first prize, went to Anna Jackson (year 12) for her performances of Après un rêve and Quella fiamma che m’accende by Gabriel Fauré and Benedetto Marcello respectively, whilst Lucy Hunt (year 11) won the award for best instrumental performance for her rendition of Edward Severn’s Polish Dance.

Both winners take their music lessons at Ashville, and have an active involvement in the life of the school’s music department.

Visiting adjudicator, David Dixon, said: “All pupils are to be applauded for their commitment to their performances which were of an amazing standard. They were all very accomplished.”

Anna Wilby, Deputy Head (co-curricular), said: “Our Music department was very pleased to be able to put the Ashville Young Musician of the Year competition back in the annual calendar of events for the first time post-COVID.

“It is a wonderful opportunity for our talented pupils to show off just what they can do. As teachers we felt incredibly proud of them all as every pupil upped their game and performed with poise and confidence.

“The evening, while a competition, was a fantastic celebration of talent and hard work. As our judge said on the evening, any of the participants could have won. He was very impressed with the quality of performances. We are already looking forward to next year's competition.”

Harrogate’s Musical Talents Celebrated At Young Musician Of The Year Competition - Photo 1
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