Dukies celebrate musical talents in annual competition
10th April 2017

Young musicians displayed a wide range of instrumental and vocal skills to an audience of students, staff, parents and governors as the Duke of York’s Royal Military School held its annual Musician of the Year competition.

Six students competed in the Instrumental Category and six in the Vocal Category in a closely-fought contest staged in the state-of-the-art Nye Hall Performing Arts Centre.

Yesm Saru, who played Sunflower by Paddy Sun on his guitar, was named Musician of the Year and winner of the instrumental category, while George Carling (performing Summertime by George Gershwin) was the runner-up.

Rachel Ward, singing And I Fall, a song she wrote herself, was runner-up in the Vocal Category, while Charlotte Blackburn-Panteli won the category with her rendition of Back to Black by Amy Winehouse and Mark Ronson.

The competition featured a range of musical styles and included performances on guitar, clarinet, violin, piano, trombone, baritone saxophone and accordion.

The Duke of York’s Royal Military School’s Corps of Drums entertained the audience while the judges deliberated at the end of the show.

Prizes were presented by Peter Birch from the Friends of DOYRMS, who sponsored the event, and visiting judge Benedict Preece, a professional conductor, who is currently the Music Director of Caritas Chamber Choir, Sandwich Concert Band and East Bridge Chorale.

Mr Preece said: “I am honoured to be judging Musician of the Year and it has been really inspiring to listen to so many well practised and meaningful performances from the students.”

Alex Foreman, the school’s Principal, said: “We are grateful to the Friends of DOYRMS for sponsoring this competition which gives our students a chance to test their performance skills in front of an audience.”

The event was held on March 24. For more information, visit

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