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Young Musicians From Across Scotland Will Compete in the First Solo Performer of the Year Final

The event takes place on 29 May 2022.

Young Musicians From Across Scotland Will Compete in the First Solo Performer of the Year Final

Scottish Young Musicians Solo Performer of the Year is a new Scotland-wide music competition run by The Music Education Partnership Group, where funding and expertise is offered to every school and Local Authority, giving all pupils in the country the chance to take part.

It can now be revealed which 22 young musicians are competing to be crowned Scotland's first ever Solo Performer of the Year. The final will involve young people representing 21 local authorities, and one representing the Independent School sector. With areas from East Dunbartonshire to City of Edinburgh, Aberdeenshire to Dumfries and Galloway, and plenty in between being represented, the competition will see the very best of young Scottish talent performing to an audience of hundreds at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland on 29 May. A full list of performers can be found in Notes to Editors.

The competition will be judged by a panel of highly experienced adjudicators sponsored by ABRSM, a global music education charity and awarding organisation which counts the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland as one of its partner Royal Schools of Music.

The panel of judges will be led by Christopher Bell, Artistic Director of NYCOS and Chorus Director of the Grant Park Music Festival, Chicago. He will be joined by Heather Nicoll, Head of Woodwind at Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, violinist Jennifer Pike, who made her concerto debut with the Hallé Orchestra aged eleven and won BBC Young Musician of the Year in 2002, and Aaron Shorr, Head of Keyboard at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

The performers will all be accompanied by renowned Scottish pianist Christopher Baxter, who has been involved with several international instrumental and vocal competitions and festivals as an accompanist and has in the past been awarded the annual Accompaniment Prize.

The winner of the Scottish Young Musician Solo Performer of the Year will receive £1,000 to be spent on activities or items to further their musical career and the Maid of Morven trophy made by the Queen's Sculptor in Ordinary in Scotland Alexander Stoddart FRSE. They will also receive a coaching session with the relevant head of department, participation in a masterclass, and a studio recording session with an accompanist, all provided at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

Two runners up will receive £250 each to spend on musical activities, from Scottish Young Musicians, and a coaching session with the relevant heads of department and participation in a masterclass at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Other finalists have the opportunity to win a range of exciting prizes including performance opportunities, concert tickets, observing rehearsals and masterclasses, mentoring, meet-and-greets with musicians, media training, music shop vouchers and more. Every finalist will receive a career-enhancing prize, a full list of prizes available can be accessed here.

This momentous event will be presented by singer and broadcaster Jamie MacDougall, who will meet with all the young performers backstage beforehand, and feature a special welcome by international classical violinist Nicola Benedetti.

Alan Kerr said: "All of us on the Scottish Young Musicians team are really excited to see all of these young people perform at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in less than a week's time. We're delighted that our line-up of finalist's hail from all over Scotland and will be playing a wide range of instruments and pieces to our fantastic panel of expert judges. We're grateful for ABRSM's support in sponsoring our judging panel and it's going to be incredible having such a wealth of talent, both young and old, in the same room on 29 May."

Christopher Bell said: "What an honour to be asked to lead a distinguished panel of judges and to get the chance to listen to 22 young stars of the future. Post pandemic Scotland's musicians need every opportunity and MPEG is to be congratulated for this superb initiative. All 22 are already winners of their own regional competitions; the stage is set to find winner's winner. Can't wait."

Chris Cobb, Chief Executive of ABRSM, said: "We're delighted to be supporting this wonderful new competition open to all young musicians in Scotland. Encouraging music making, progression and performance is at the heart of what we do at ABRSM. Being involved with the competition and sponsoring the adjudicator panel for the Solo Performer of the Year final feels like a perfect match for us. I'm sure the panel, made up of highly experienced musicians and educators of international standing, will be enjoying some fantastic performances on 29 May."
Young Musicians From Across Scotland Will Compete in the First Solo Performer of the Year Final

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