A trio of talented young King’s School musicians have all earned places at the Junior Royal Northern College of Music.
Joining veteran opera singer Olivia Hamblyn, 17, and pianist and clarinet player John Daly, 16, this year will be 13-year-old violinist Georgina Bloomfield. All three will be happy to spend all day every Saturday at the famous central Manchester college.
Georgina Bloomfield, a pupil at King’s Girls’ Division, begins her practice sessions every day before school at six in the morning and then does more hours at the weekend. Helped by her mother and professional violinist, Helen Bloomfield, Georgina’s dedication and talent have seen her selected for the JRNCM orchestra, even though she is still only 13-years-old. She has also just won the junior violin competition at the prestigious Bowdon Music Festival.
Georgina said: “I love playing my violin and enjoy being with friends in an orchestra. That’s the most important thing, you have to enjoy what you are doing.” Her proudest moment came when she played with renowned Scottish violinist Nicola Benedetti and she said: “That was a wonderful moment and a great honour.” Georgina too would love to become a professional musician but adds, “I might also want to become a vet.”
Olivia, 17, who is a hugely popular member of King’s Sixth Form, already has a long list of credits having sung with the National Youth Choir for seven years and the Halle Youth Choir for four years as well as the Junior Royal Northern College of Music Choir last year.
In that time she has performed both as a soloist and member of the choir in concerts all over the country including working with the Sir Simon Rattle in the Royal Albert Hall two years ago. Olivia said: “I practise formally four times a week, but in truth I am singing all the time and it’s not just about developing the voice, but learning about pronunciation, intonation, acting and very importantly staying healthy, fit and strong.”
Olivia has recently been offered a place to study Voice at the RNCM in September, achieving a long-held ambition to study at the prestigious music centre after finishing her A Levels.
Versatile instrumentalist John Daly, 16, is happy playing both jazz and classical music and still finds time to practise both the piano and clarinet as he prepares for his GCSEs. He spends his day on Saturday in piano lessons, composition and improvisation lessons, and with the JRNCM jazz band.
John, who is Head Boy at King’s, said: “I practise both my instruments every day and have Grade 8 with distinction in the piano and am now working towards my diploma, and I’m hoping to get Grade 8 in clarinet shortly.”
He added; “I love playing jazz greats like Bill Evans but also get just as much pleasure playing Chopin, Haydn or Beethoven. I haven’t decided whether I want to be a professional musician yet, because I am also very interested in studying Medicine.”
King’s Director of Music Ian Crawford said: “King’s is blessed with some astonishingly talented and hardworking young musicians that it is a joy to teach and better still hear perform.”