Dunhurst pupil joins National Children's Orchestra

A Block 2 (Year 8) pupil at Bedales Prep, Dunhurst has been selected from over 1,000 applicants to join the National Children’s Orchestra (NCO).

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Shoshana Yugin-Power, a Music Scholar at Dunhurst who was previously a member of one of the NCO’s junior orchestras, was invited to join the organisation’s senior orchestra for children under 13 after auditioning for a place to play the flute last year.

Shoshana, who has been playing the flute since she was six, achieved Grade 8 with Distinction in summer 2019 and is currently working towards the ARSM Performance Diploma. As well as the flute, Shoshana plays the recorder (working towards the ARSM Performance Diploma), piano, bassoon and sings (working towards Grade 8).

Every autumn, the NCO auditions over 1,000 children between the ages of seven and 14, whittling applicants down to just 600 young musicians who go on to form a total of 11 orchestras. A place in the NCO gives children access to “inspirational” residencies during school holidays – including an eight-day residential course at Easter, and a nine-day residential course in the summer holiday – as well as monthly regional orchestra rehearsals in the local area, which will see Shoshana join the mixed age ‘South Easterlies’ Orchestra for five Sundays throughout the year.

As well as being admitted to the NCO, Shoshana recently reached the final of this year’s WSO Hampshire Young Soloist Award following a successful audition where she played the Vivaldi concerto on the flute from memory. Shoshana will now prepare to play a complete concerto with the Winchester Symphony Orchestra at the final in July.

Shoshana said: “It means so much to me to be offered a place with the NCO. I hope to be a professional musician in the future, and the experience that the NCO offers is amazing. The tutors are fantastic and we enjoy a wide range of repertoire that I love playing. I’ve really enjoyed the previous courses I’ve been on with the NCO, where I’ve made so many friends who are just like me. I feel very privileged to have this exciting opportunity.”

Head of Dunhurst Colin Baty added: “Shoshana is a shining light in music, she has achieved so much. She is dedicated and through her own hard work rightly deserves this opportunity.”

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