BHS Musician of the Year & Music Festival 2015
The music festival took place once again this year with the auditions spread over the course of two days. A large range of classes was on offer for students of any year, playing any instrument or singing including a harp class, ensemble class and recital class.
We were lucky enough to have an external adjudicator, Janet Obi-Keller PhD, MMus, PGCE, LGSM, to assess us over the two days. Mrs Obi-Keller gave very encouraging comments and advice to all candidates and struggled to make a decision as to who would go through to the next round of the Musician of the Year competition 2015.
Before participants performed in the Musician of the Year concert/competition, Elise Wiseman, Abi Hudson and I were invited to participate in the Musician of the Year Masterclass held by ex-Bromley student and professional singer, Katie McAdam. We were lucky enough to hear Ms McAdam sing us five wonderful works, including some well-known pieces such as ‘I Feel Pretty’ from West Side Story. Each of us then played and sang the pieces that we had prepared and Ms McAdam gave us very useful tips and cheats as to how to better our playing as a performance and also technical insight into the more intricate details of the music. She tested us by taking away our stands and having us play by heart, and also advising us to walk around, sit down and maybe even jog whilst playing. This really showed us that, when not concentrating so much on the music on the page, you are likely to give a better performance.
Next it was time for the concert; it was now Ms McAdam’s chance to sit back and enjoy our playing whilst also deciding on the winner. We heard the winners from each of the classes from the festival - all of which were of an incredible standard. Sophie Oliver and Ellie Sheehan from the ensemble class were awarded the trophy for playing a brilliant rendition of ‘Bring Him Home’ from Les Misérables on cello and piano. Overall, it was a wonderful week and I’m already looking forward to the Musician of the Year 2016.