It has been a very musical week for sixth former Katie Edwards. Last Sunday, 7th July, saw Katie competing for the third year in a row as a finalist in Staffordshire Young Musician 2019. This high-profile event was held at Entrust, Stafford and saw her performing all three movements of Malcolm Arnold’s Sonatina for clarinet. She received high praise and positive adjudication but the ultimate winner was xylophone player Noa Dewally of Walton. Katie was awarded a certificate and a cheque for £25 from Friends of Staffordshire Young Musicians in recognition of her efforts.

After months of preparation and consultant lessons with tutor Sally Harrop of the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, Katie took her ARSM examination on Thursday 11th July. This performance diploma is a little step up from Grade 8 and required her to demonstrate performance skills by delivering a 30-minute programme in which she was assessed on musical communication, interpretation and technical delivery. Her accompanist, Mr John Savage, who has worked with Katie over a number of years said that she gave a very good performance and it had been a thoroughly enjoyable experience working with her. Her result will be available in a few weeks time.

The final event this week saw Katie playing in Saturdays coffee concert at Collegiate Church of St Mary in Stafford. This was a showcase concert designed to give a performance opportunity to just a few of the excellent young musicians from Staffordshire. Katie repeated her performance of Arnold’s Sonatina for clarinet as well as Gabriel Grovlez’s Concertino, which she previously played at Friary Schools instrumental evening in June.

Katie continues to pursue her musical journey. She expects to take her Piano Grade 8 at Christmas and is concentrating on preparing herself for applications and auditions to study music at University.

Matt Allman, Headteacher, said: “We are always delighted to hear of Friary students’ successes out in the community and it is not surprise to see Katie shining given her talent. The acclaim has been achieved through absolute dedication and we hugely admire her work.”