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Astounding Trumpeter Wins Music Festival

Trumpeter Marilla Evans from Ysgol Gelli Aur was the overall winner at this year’s Primary Schools Valero Music Festival. 

The annual festival – organised by the Pembrokeshire County Council’s Music Service and sponsored by Valero – recently took place at Sir Thomas Picton School in Haverfordwest.

Over 200 young musicians from the County’s primary schools took part in individual and ensemble competitions throughout the day.

Later in the afternoon, an enthusiastic audience enjoyed a ‘Showcase’ concert featuring the individual and ensemble winners from the day’s competitions, as well as the county’s Primary Schools Area Ensembles.

Music Service co-ordinators Philippa Roberts and Sarah Benbow said afterwards: “The young musicians of Pembrokeshire continue to make everyone proud with their dedication and achievements.”

Marilla was presented with the trophy by County Music Service Manager, Ben Field and head adjudicator Mr Chris Llewellyn. Marilla performed Concert Etude op. 49 by Alexander Goedicke.

The Open String competition winner was harpist Eliza Bradbury from Spittal school. She performed Merch Megan by Olivia Buckley Dussek.

Loti Makepeace from Ysgol Brynconin won the Open Piano class and performed Tarantella (No. 6 from Miniatures, Op. 33) by Maikapar.

Meanwhile the Open Woodwind class winner was Emily Andrasko from Ysgol Hafan y Mor, who performed Largo and Vivace from Purcell Sonata no 2 in d minor.

The Open Instrumental Ensemble competition was won by the Spittal Trio, consisting of Harp, Clarinet and Piano played by Eliza Bradbury, Jennifer Rees and Annis Henton. They performed O Ferch y Blwydd Penderyn and Eine Kleine Nachtmusik by Mozart.

The Open Percussion class was won by Oliver Haltam from Narberth School. He performed Mohair Mountain by Joe Bennet & Kung Fu.

The County Area Ensembles which performed were:

  • St Davids Area Orchestra (conducted by Hilary Lewis)
  • Cerddorfa Bro Waldo (Chris Gillatt)
  • Bro Jemima Orchestra (Philippa Roberts)
  • Pembroke Area Primary Schools Orchestra (Verity Evans)
  • Tenby Area Orchestra (Colin Barrett)
  • Haverfordwest and Milford Haven Area Orchestra (Gareth Sanders-Swales).

The invited professional adjudicators were greatly impressed with the high standard and strength of schools’ music on show from across the County.

“I travel across the country as an examiner and performer. The standard reached by these young pupils in Pembrokeshire is unsurpassed,” said Denis Mahoney, the adjudicator for Brass.

“This Music festival is so important and something to treasure.”

  • Dennis Mahoney (Brass)
  • Mark Jennings (Woodwind)
  • Chris Llewellyn (Ensembles)
  • Jane Gregory (Strings)
  • Susanne Griffiths-Rees (Piano)
  • Joel Rees (Percussion).

County Music Manager, Ben Field, said he was grateful to the adjudicators, teachers, parents and students for making the Festival such a success.

He also thanked The Friends of Pembrokeshire Orchestra for their continued support to the Music Service at this and all events throughout the year.

Ben added: “Once again, we have witnessed extraordinary displays of talent from our young people.

“It has been a memorable evening and one which has taken place thanks to the generosity of the sponsors, Valero, to whom we are all once again indebted.”