Category finalists announced for BBC Young Musician 2012

The BBC competition really helped to start my career, as it gave me exposure and brought me to the attention of the British classical music world. It opened up a lot of opportunities.” Benjamin Grosvenor
Date: 27.01.2012     Last updated: 18.03.2014 at 17.58
Category: BBC Two; BBC Four; Wales
The category auditions for BBC Young Musician 2012 took place in December and 25 young performers have been offered a place at the category finals, Monday 5 to Friday 9 March at the Dora Stoutzker Hall, Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

With only two opportunities remaining to impress the panel of adjudicators and audience in an attempt to reach the final in May, five enthusiastic performers per category will perform at the Category Finals. The winner of each evening will then receive a place in the semi-final on Sunday, March 11 and from these, just three will be selected to go through to the BBC Young Musician 2012 Final.

Audiences at home will not be disappointed as performances will be recorded for broadcast on BBC Four (category finals) and BBC Two (semi-final and final).

Previous winners and finalists have gone on to major international careers. Violinist Jennifer Pike is regarded as one of the most gifted of the younger generation of British artists and will be performing in an evening of recitals at Music Nation Cymru on Sunday, March 4. She was the youngest ever winner of the competition in 2002.

“The BBC Young Musician 2002 competition was a life-changing experience for me, not only because of the wonderful concert opportunities and recordings that it led to, but also because of the great pleasure I had taking part,” says Jennifer.

“I shall always remember the very special atmosphere and I feel honoured to have met so many terrific musicians at each stage of this prestigious competition. My advice to all the participants would be to remember that once you are on stage, what matters most of all is that you enjoy communicating the music to the audience.”

Nineteen-year-old Benjamin Grosvenor is an internationally recognised pianist and came to prominence following his success at BBC Young Musician 2004, winning the Keyboard Category Final and made his Proms debut in 2011 at the opening night.

“The BBC competition really helped to start my career, as it gave me exposure and brought me to the attention of the British classical music world. It opened up a lot of opportunities,” says Ben.

“Before the competition, I had only given minor concerts locally, but soon afterwards I found myself, for example, touring Scotland with the Scottish String Ensemble and performing at Wigmore Hall.

“It was certainly a wonderful and exciting experience at the age of 11, too young to feel pressure or stress. It helped me to grow as a pianist, and caused me to expand my repertoire. The most memorable part for me was playing with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in the final - my debut with a professional orchestra.”

The 25 who have made it to the 2012 category finals are:


  • Martin Bartlett (15) Piano, Hornchurch, Essex 
  • Adam Boeker (15) Piano, Manchester/Alberta, Canada 
  • Dominic Degavino (16) Piano, Grassmoor, Chersterfield 
  • Victor Lim (17) Piano, Somerset/South Korea
  • Yuanfan Yang (15) Piano, Prestwich, Lancs


  • Jonathan Bates (16) E flat Tenor Horn, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire
  • Christopher Dunn (18) Tuba, London
  • Alexander Kelly (16) Bass Trombone, Hale, Altrincham
  • Elizabeth Tocknell (17) French Horn, Church Stretton, Shropshire
  • Elzbieta Young (16) Trumpet, Blackburn, Lancs


  • Cristian Grajner-Desa (17) Violin, Heath and Reach, Bedfordshire 
  • Julia Hwang (16) Violin, Bristol
  • Juliette Roos (16) Violin, Fetcham, Surrey
  • Joel Sandelson (17) Cello, London
  • Laura Van Der Heijden (14) Cello, Forest Row, East Sussex


  • Charlotte Barbour-Condini (15) Recorder, Stoke Newington, London
  • Jordan Black (18) Clarinet, Swindon, Wiltshire 
  • Charlotte Cox (18) Bassoon, Guildford, Surrey
  • Lucinda Dunne (17) Saxophone, Stallington Village, Staffordshire
  • Luke O'Toole (18) Flute, Ormskirk, Lancs


  • James Larter (17) Percussion, Far Cotton, Northamptonshire
  • Hyun-gi Lee (15) Percussion, Guildford/ Seoul, South Korea 
  • Molly Lopresti (18) Percussion, Totnes, Devon
  • Peter Rayner (15) Percussion, Howe Green, Essex
  • Richard Rayner (18) Percussion, Howe Green, Essex

To launch the week, BBC Young Musician includes an evening of short recitals at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama on Sunday, March 4, as part of Music Nation Cymru, with performances from past winners, violinist Jennifer Pike (BBC Young Musician 2002), trombonist Peter Moore (BBC Young Musician 2008) and percussionist Lucy Landymore (BBC Young Musician 2010 Percussion Category Winner).

BBC Young Musician is managed and produced by BBC Cymru Wales.

For the latest news, history of the competition and to see previous performances, visit

Note to Editors

  • 122 musicians were selected to be heard again in the category auditions
  • It’s 34 years since BBC Young Musician was launched
  • 453 applications were received for 2012 with 404 auditioned across the United Kingdom during the regional auditions
  • The venue for the Final will be announced shortly

Sunday, March 11, 7pm

BBC Young Musician recital - Music Nation Cymru
Sunday, March 4, 7pm

Tickets: £6 Student / child concession £3

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