RNCM Students Reach BBC Brass Final

RNCM students David Gillson and Ryan Watkins  (pictured) are two of four musicians to reach the finals of the 2014 BBC Young Brass Award.

Cornet player David and trombonist Ryan, both in their third year, performed in the semi-finals of the annual competition in January, and will now compete for the final award at BBC Philharmonic Studio on Friday 28 March, accompanied by Grimethorpe Colliery Band and conductor Frank Renton.

The Young Brass Award was originally launched as the Young Brass Soloist Award in 2004 and since then has gained a strong track record for spotting talent. The RNCM has featured prominently throughout the decade, with past winners including alumni Katrina Marzella (Solo baritone, Black Dyke band), Lewis Musson (Solo euphonium, Central Band of the Royal Air Force), Ben Thomson (Principal tuba, Orchestra of The Royal Opera House), and Matthew White (Solo euphonium, Cory Band).

Talking of the competition, host Ken Bruce said: ‘It’s an honour to be hosting BBC Radio 2’s Young Brass Award. It is so important to support and nurture young musical talent and I’m proud the station gives these emerging stars the chance to shine and be heard.’

Frank Renton, presenter of Listen to the Band, added: ‘It’s wonderful that yet again Radio 2 is searching out the best young brass players in the UK and providing a stage for them. Every one of the winners thus far has gone on to do great things in their chosen careers, and no doubt taking part in the Young Brass Awards has given a great impetus to their futures. It’s a joy to be involved.’

The RNCM prides itself of offering exceptional tuition and performance opportunities to brass students from all over the world. In September, this will enhance further with the launch of the brand new Philip Jones Centre for Brass.

10 February 2014