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BBC Young Musician of the Year 2008:  Category finalists announced 10.1.2008 (BK)

Peter Moore - Trombone

The category finalists for BBC Young Musician of the Year 2008 have been announced and  range from a 12 year-old trombonist from Cheshire to an Oxford law student clarinet player whose African grey parrot copies her scales. Some 360 musicians were auditioned during the past four months for this year's competition which is now organised in Cardiff by BBC Wales.

Following a week of concerts at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama four young musicians from each of the five categories have now been selected to compete for the five places in the final. The 20 category finalists will now compete in Cardiff in February (19-23) for a coveted place in the final. The category finals are to be held at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

The complete list of category finalists is as follows:


Jadran Duncumb - Guitar

Age: 18. From: Ski, Norway

Based in Ski near Oslo in Norway, 18 year old Jadran began playing the guitar 10 years ago.  He is in his final year at Ski 6th Form College and also attends Barratt Due Music Institute in Oslo where he studies in the Conservatoire Class, a programme for a handful of the very best young musicians in Norway.  Jadran has won the Norwegian National Youth Competition twice, not only in the guitar class but also in the duet class with his brother Emil, who competed in the Keyboard Semi-Final of BBC Young Musician.  Jadran intends studying music at a UK Conservatoire from autumn 2008.

Jun Sasaki - Cello

Age: 18. From: London

Jun is a student at the Yehudi Menuhin School and has played the cello since he was five years old.  He started the violin aged four but decided he didn’t like it! Jun performs regularly at the Menuhin School and as a soloist for outside engagements and has recently performed with members of the London Mozart Players.  Taking A Level History and Music in the summer, Jun hopes to study at the Royal College of Music from September 2008.

Cecilia Sultana De Maria - Harp

Age: 18. From: Warminster, Wilts

Cecilia already played piano and violin when she began playing the harp aged 10.  Currently at The Purcell School of Music, 18 year old Cecilia also studies at the Junior Department at the Royal College of Music in London where she is Principal Harp for their symphony orchestra.  A position she also holds with Purcell School Symphony Orchestra and the London Schools’ Symphony Orchestra.  Cecilia’s harp has a fascinating story.  Made in Chicago in the 1920’s its last owner was a nun who sadly had to sell it when her convent was closed down!

Katherine Robb - Violin

Age: 14. From: Bushey, Herts

Katherine is a student at The Purcell School of Music.  She started playing the violin aged eight having been offered free lessons at school.  She has played in the 1st violins of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain for the last two years and is the leader of The Purcell School Sinfonia.  Katherine also plays the piano but outside of her musical life, she loves reading and watching films, particularly horror films!  Katherine is lucky enough to have been loaned a Joseph Albani Bolzano violin c. 1721.


Melanie Rothman - Oboe

Age: 16. From: Carshalton, Surrey

Melanie is at The Purcell School of Music and has been playing the oboe for 5 and half years.  She also attends the Junior Department at the Royal Academy of Music where she is the Principal Oboe of the Junior Academy’s Symphony Orchestra, a position she also holds with the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.  Melanie is studying for AS Levels in Music, German and English Literature and has a particular passion for the fashion and art of the 18th Century.

David Smith - Flute

Age: 18. From: Fife

David Smith is at St Mary’s Music School in Edinburgh.  He was inspired to begin playing the flute just 4 years ago when he heard Debussy’s L’aprés Midi d’un Faune.  David plays in many of his school’s chamber groups, the Edinburgh Youth Orchestra and the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland, plus he is an accomplished saxophonist.  Amongst David’s non-musical passions he loves shopping, clothes and shoes!

Anke Batty - Clarinet

Age: 18. From: Lyndhurst, Hampshire

Anke is in her first year at Oxford studying Law with Law Studies in Europe.  Clarinet is only one of Anke’s talents;  she has also achieved Grade 8 distinction in Singing, Piano and Saxophone, whilst at King Edward VI School in Southampton.  A member of the National Youth Orchestra for seven years, she was co-principal clarinettist during the 2006/07 season and is currently Principal  Clarinet  of the Oxford University Orchestra.  When she can find the time, Anke enjoys tennis, swimming and scuba diving and she owns an African Grey parrott who likes Messiaen and Poulenc and will copy Anke’s scales, particularly minor arpeggios!

Joseph Shiner - Clarinet

Age: 16. From: East Brent, Somerset

Joseph is a student at Wells Cathedral School in Somerset.  He started playing the clarinet aged eight when his piano teacher wanted him to have a second instrument so he could play in ensembles.  Joseph is still only 16 years old, but his ambition after reading music at either Cambridge or a London Conservatoire is to be either a soloist or a member of a chamber group and then to teach at one of the major Conservatoires or Universities.  He has just been made Principal Clarinet of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain after only two years of membership.


Alexander Edmundson - French Horn

Age: 16. From: Lytham St. Annes, Lancs

16 year old Alex is a student at Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester.  He began playing the horn at the age of seven having heard Mozart’s Horn Concert No 4 played by his parent’s amateur orchestra.  Alex is also an accomplished pianist and sings bass in the school’s chamber choir, and as well as playing in the Chetham’s Symphony Orchestra, he is Principal Horn in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.  Alex is studying for A Levels in Music, Music Technology and History and hopes to go onto music college.

Henry Lindsay - Tuba

Age: 16. From: Amersham, Bucks

Henry has been playing the tuba for seven years, starting when he was just nine years old.  Now 16 and a pupil at The Purcell School of Music, he also plays the piano and sings and hopes to become a professional tuba player or singer.  Henry plays in a variety of ensembles both at school and at the Junior Royal Academy of Music and is also a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.  Although music takes up most of his time, Henry also enjoys football, rugby, computer games and loves eating whenever possible.

Matthew White  Euphonium

Age: 17. From: Bolton

Matthew White from Bolton was surrounded by brass instruments from a very early age as both his parent and sister are all players.  An accomplished trombonist and pianist in addition to euphonium, he is a pupil at Chetham’s School of Music studying A2 Level Maths and Music, having already completed Music A Level.  He plays with the award winning Leyland Band and is Principal Euphonium with the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain as well as many ensembles at school on both euphonium and trombone.

Peter Moore - Trombone

Age: 12. From: Stalybridge, Cheshire

At 12 years old, Peter is the youngest remaining musician in the Competition.  All Peter’s family are brass players and he started playing the trombone aged six.  In Year 7 at Chetham’s School of Music, he plays in many groups and ensembles but has also held the position of Principal Trombone of the National Children’s Band of Great Britain for the last three years and is solo trombone player with Wingates.


David Elliott

Age: 18. From: Bournemouth

David is currently at Trinity College of Music studying for BMus Jazz degree having attended Chetham’s School of Music for three years.  18 years old now, he started playing when he was seven having been influenced by a drummer he saw when he was just three years old!  David is also an accomplished trumpeter and pianist and has was Co- Principal in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain percussion section for 2006/07.  In his spare time, he plays and watches rugby and football and during the summer months enjoys spending time on the beach in his home town of Bournemouth.

Delia Stevens

Age: 16.  From: Normanton-on-Soar, Leics

A pupil at Loughborough High School, 16 year old Delia also attends the Junior Department at the Royal Northern College of Music. In addition to working towards her GCSE’s this year, Delia plays in many ensembles both at school and at JRNCM, is a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and used to be part of the National Children’s Orchestra.  She also plays piano and has reached Grade 8, but was inspired to take up percussion after watching the school orchestra in action.

Jim Molyneux

Age:17. From: Littleborough, Lancashire

Jim took up percussion at the age of seven as he had been hitting buckets and ironing boards from a much earlier age!  10 years later, he is a student in the Lower sixth at Chetham’s School of Music, he also plays the piano accordion and sings.  Jim plays in various ensembles at school plus, a folk band called 4Square, who tour the Britain playing summer folk festivals and a rock band called The Zero Symphony.

Daniel Day

Age: 17. From: Hayfield, High Peak

17 year old Daniel began playing the drums when his Dad, a professional drummer, bought him his first drum aged three years old!  An A Level student at Chetham’s School of Music, he is studying Music, Music Technology and Geography.  Daniel plays in many of the ensembles at school including the symphony orchestra, brass band, big band and Jazz quintet.  He plays with fellow percussion Semi-Finalist, Jim Molyneux, in a folk band called 4Square and is a member of a rock band called Lost Your Way.  Daniel is a keen Manchester City supporter and has a pet goat at home in Derbyshire’s High Peak called Harry! No, surely the goat's called Harry, (Ed)


Michael Foyle - Piano

Age: 16. From: Troon, Ayrshire

A student at Wellington School in Ayr, 16 year old Michael from Troon in Ayrshire, began playing the piano when he was six.  An accomplished violinist as well, he received his ABRSM Performance Diploma when he was 14 and attends the Junior Department at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music & Drama.  Michael is the leader of his school orchestra, sings in the school choir and plays piano in the jazz band.  He led the National Children’s Orchestra of Scotland, been a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland and has recently been accepted in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.

Kausikan Rajeshkumar - Piano

Age: 17. From: Harrow, Middlesex

Kausikan is a pupil at The Purcell School of Music.  He started playing 10 years ago and has already chalked up an impressive list of recital engagements both as a soloist and a chamber musician in venues including Wigmore Hall, St John’s Smith Square and the Queen Elizabeth Hall.  Kausikan was a prize winner in 2005 at the International Liszt Competition in Weimar and in addition to his playing he has received awards for his composing including a Highly Commended in BBC Young Composer of the Year 2006.  He enjoys good food and filling his mind with quite useless information!

Erdem Misirlioğlu - Piano

Age: 18. From: Ipswich

Erdem is a student at Northgate High School in Ipswich studying Music, Maths and Further Maths at A Level and travels every week to the Junior Department at Guildhall School of Music and Drama.  Chamber music is a big part of Erdem’s musical life and he belongs to a piano trio, a duo with violin and until recently a piano duo.  He enjoys almost any form of sport and also likes anything that requires a logical thought process from maths puzzles to chess.

Sam Law  Piano

Age: 17. From: Ballymena, Antrim

17 year old Sam is from Ballymena, Co Antrim in Northern Ireland and is a student at the Ballymena Academy where he is studying for A Levels in French, German, Maths and Further Maths.  He began playing at the age of six and travels regularly to Dublin for lessons at the Royal Irish Academy of Music.  Sam is a frequent performer at music festivals in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland and has achieved three diplomas in piano performance.

The competition final is being held on May 10 and 11 at the Wales Millennium Centre in
Cardiff, where the young musicians will perform with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, conducted by Thierry Fischer.

Details of competition broadcasts are yet to be confirmed but will include coverage on BBC Two, BBC Four, BBC Wales, Radio 3, Radio Wales, Radio Cymru and online.

For details of the category finals contact the RWCMD box office on 029 2039 1391. All concerts start at

Bill Kenny

For More Information:Contact: Mike Smith Tel: 029 20 462686 Mobile: 07795 325161 or  Email:


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