Guitarist Dominic Miller honours father with travel award for RNCM students

Guitarist Dominic Miller and his family have established a travel award for RNCM students, in honour of his father.

Dominic Miller with guitarThe Barney Miller International Travel Award offers young musicians a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience the music and culture of Latin America. Each year, five students on the College’s Popular Music degree programmes will be nominated to receive the award, with one gaining the enviable chance to spend a week in Brazil or Argentina, where Barney spent almost 40 years of his life and where Dominic was born.

‘There’s no better way to understand the origins of Latin American music than by going there and learning from the finest teachers and then eating, drinking and playing music with local musicians,’ said Dominic (pictured), who has toured and recorded with some of the world’s most famous artists, including an incredible 30 years with Sting.

‘My father gave me this opportunity when I was 19 while I was studying guitar and composition at the Guildhall. I credit my career to this trip because having that extra dialect in my musical vocabulary has opened the door to so many opportunities. The infectious Latin American feel finds itself in many harmonic and rhythmic situations I work in where it’s always somehow relevant.’

Barney Miller aged 20 playing guitar as a student at Cambridge

An American brought up in Argentina, Barney Miller (pictured as a 20-year-old student at Cambridge) was an incredibly gifted musician who learnt many Argentine and Brazilian songs by ear. He also excelled as a businessman and was able to merge these skills with his passion for music by promoting and sponsoring musicians from many genres.

He was on the board of the Young Concert Artists Trust (YCAT) for 15 years, funding and managing musicians, and guiding them into their careers.

Dominic, who also has an extensive solo portfolio, added: ‘Music is a language, and the aim is to be fluent enough to converse with others. Adding a South American accent to your musical vocabulary can only make you a better and more versatile musician.

‘This award is our family extending our father’s love of Latin American music and culture by offering this experience in his name. We look forward to meeting the applicants and witnessing the results of the winners upon their return.’

6 September 2021