I caught the Windwood final of BBC Young Musician of the Year on Friday evening. The competition has been televised over the last few weeks (I wrote about the Keyboard final a couple of weeks ago and you can read my blog post here). The Wind final was particularly interesting due to the fact that the five finalists (pictured above) played all different instruments; Recorder, Clarinet, Saxophone, Flute and Bassoon. The standard was also unusually high making the final decision a tough one.
Each finalist presented an array of composers including works by J.S.Bach, Castello, Marcello, Brahms, Giampieri, Rimsky-Korsakov, Taffanel, Burton, Maurice, Tansman, and Linde. Quite an electic mix but definitely something for everyone to enjoy.
The flautist, Luke O’Toole gave a spellbinding performance finishing with a virtuosic romp through the Fantaisie Sur Le ‘Freischutz’ by Taffanel, proving himself to be a highly acomplished performer and indeed I suspected, the winner. I really enjoyed the Bassoonist, Charlotte Cox, who crammed four different works into her 20 minute recital bravely finishing with Rimsky- Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumble Bee.
The winner was Charlotte Barbour – Condini, a Recorder player. I thoroughly enjoyed her performance which fully demonstrated ample technical and musical ablity coupled with beautiful tone production. She gave a captivating account of Trotto, an anonymous medieval piece, which was delivered with panache and was accompanied by percussion. However, I didn’t expect the jury to pick a Recorder player! It made history too as a Recorder player has never previously been selected to play in a BBC Young Musician Semi-Final.
If you would like to watch the Wind final, it is still available on BBC iPlayer. The Young Musician of the Year Final 2012 will be held on May 13th at The Sage in Gateshead and will be broadcast on BBC 2 and Radio 3. It should be well worth watching – I am looking forward to it.