Perth Chamber Music Society Jubilee Bursaries

"The great thing about classical music is that so much has been written over the centuries, and new works today, that we are forever coming across new things to play, listen to and enjoy!"

The Perth Chamber Music Society Jubilee Bursary competition was created to mark the Diamond Jubilee of the Society in 2008.

Our aim is to support and encourage local school children interested in making music and continuing their musical activities, after leaving school.

Amy Smart, Bursary Winner 2014

The competition is open to all pupils who are attending school, or who have lived for at least twelve months in the Perth and Kinross area. They will be expected to have reached Associated Board Grade 8, or, if in the opinion of their teachers, they are of that standard.

Application is by a written form and supported by their teacher. From these up to six candidates will be selected by a committee of the PCMS to present and play at least two pieces of their own choice, for 20 minutes, in front of an audience of their supporters and PCMS members.

They will be assessed by a panel of three independent judges.

At the start of the school year the Competition is advertised in schools and local music teachers across the Perth and Kinross area and is held annually in March at a local venue in Perth, with financial awards to the successful musicians. Winners will be excluded from any subsequent competition.

We have been supported in being able to do this by the Jimmie Cairncross Charitable Trust, and the generosity of members of the Chamber Music Society.

How to Apply

If you...

  • are 16 years or older on 1 January 2021
  • have a home address and/or attend school in the Perth and Kinross area for at least 12 months
  • are at Grade 8 or equivalent standard
  • intend to continue your music making beyond school for further study or for pleasure

...we would like to hear from you.

The 2021 Competition and Awards have had to be cancelled, due to the continuing pandemic restrictions.

Maya Christie, 2020 Winner
Maya Christie
2020 Winner

Report on the 2020 Bursary Competition

The competition took place on Sunday afternoon, March 15th, at the North Inch Campus in Perth before the Covid-19 lockdown was put in place a few days later.

Members of the Chamber Music Society, parents, friends and accompanists made up the audience for the competitors.

One of our judges, James Waters, director of Classical Music at Perth Concert Hall, was unable to attend when problems with his car left him stranded. The other two, Professor Stephen Broad and Heather Nicoll, both from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, were able to adjudicate, and we are grateful to them for giving up their time while having to cope with problems of their own students at this time.

Luke Mitchell [Perth High School] had dropped out with a bad cold, which he was reluctant to pass on, which was noble of him.

The first winner was Jessica McFarlane [Morrison’s Academy] playing the Trumpet. Second was Maya Christie [Community School of Auchterader] –Violin. Both played superbly and were worthy winners. Ellie Nielsen [Voice] and Madeleine Sayce [Violin], both from Strathallan School, completed a talented group of young performers.

Heather Nicoll presented the awards and certificates and praised the performances of all the contestants and said how much both judges enjoyed the afternoon, impressed by the standard and musicality of all the youngsters. Both judges took time afterwards to talk to the contestants about their performances, which was much appreciated.

Again we are grateful to our sponsors, members of the Society, Concorde Music of Perth and especially the Jimmie Cairncross Charitable Trust whose financial support allows us to run this event.

Bursary Winners 2019: Ola Stanton (2nd), Alexander Wallace (1st), Sarah Newman (3rd)
Ola Stanton (2nd), Alexander Wallace (1st),
Sarah Newman (3rd)

Report on the Jubilee Bursary Competition 2019

After a disappointing year in 2018, when only two candidates entered and we had to postpone the event, 2019 produced a bumper crop of eleven enquiries. Alas, two were ineligible and one withdrew. The remainder were accepted to compete.

The event was held in the Joan Knight Studio, in Perth Theatre on Sunday afternoon on 10th March in front of the candidate’s supporters, members of the Chamber Music society and the three adjudicators, Peter Rutterford, Joelle Broad and Samantha Mc Shane.

We were privileged to hear a variety of instruments, a Treble recorder, three pianists, one of whom also sang, three Violins and a Cellist.

Alexander Wallace- piano, from Glenalmond College took the top award.

The youngest competitor, Ola Stanton- violin came second and Sarah Newman-cello, gained the last major prize. Both these two from Kinross High school.

The remainder were presented with certificates and a small Gift token donated by Concorde Music of Perth.

We are indebted to the Jimmie Cairncross Charitable Trust for their support in being able to run this completion and providing the prize monies.

Never having had more than five finalists in the past, eight soloists made it a long afternoon and we may have to consider reducing the numbers to a more manageable number in the future.

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2018

This would have been our 10th year of awards, but sadly and for the first time, we had insufficient entrants to run the competition. We very much look forward to running the Bursary again in 2019.

Bursary Winners 2017: Leonie Brink and Angus Grierson
Leonie Brink and Angus Grierson
2017 Winners

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2017

For our ninth annual competition on 12th March 2017 we had five entrants – Leonie Brink (clarinet) from Kilgraston School, Angus Grierson (trombone) and Alexandra Milne (oboe) from Glenalmond College and Joseph Pickering (clarinet) and Erin Bathgate (French horn) from Kinross High School. The joint winners were Leonie Brink and Angus Grierson.

The standard required is Grade 8 or beyond. We heard five very varied programmes, demonstrating the character of each instrument and the development of musical styles through time. One entrant even included one of his own compositions in his programme. The young people had told us of their hopes and dreams for the future with music as a part as a continuing interest or as a profession. We wish them all well.

The competition is made possible by the generous support of the Jimmie Cairncross Charitable Trust, the Concord Music shop and the members of Perth Chamber Music Society. We thank the adjudicators Peter Rutterford (chair), James Waters and Howard Duthie. We also thank Perth & Kinross Education Department for the use of St John’s Academy in Perth for the venue.

Bursary Winner 2016: Jamie Turnbull
Jamie Turnbull
2016 Winner

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2016

For our competition on 6th March 2016 we had five entrants: three violinists, a clarinettist and a pianist. Jake Paterson (violin) was from Auchterarder Community School, Appin Mackay- Champion (clarinet) from Glenalmond College, Hannah Millard (violin) from Perth High School, Jamie Turnbull (piano) from Crieff High School and Libby Dillon (violin) from Morrison’s Academy. Jamie Turnbull won the Bursary with an exceptional piano recital.

The standard required is Grade 8 or beyond. We heard five very varied programmes, demonstrating the character of each instrument and the development of musical styles through time. The young people had told us of their hopes and dreams for the future with music as a part as a continuing interest of as a profession. We wish them all well.

The competition is made possible by the generous support of the Jimmie Cairncross Charitable Trust, the Concord Music shop and the members of Perth Chamber Music Society.

Bursary Winners 2015: Murphy Robertson and Eliza Younger
Murphy Robertson and Eliza Younger
2015 Winners

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2015

For the competition on 1st March we had six entrants – a record year. Rebecca Coffey, flute, and Libby Dillon, violin, both from Morrisons Academy; Catherine Holland, violin, from Perth Grammar School; Murphy Robertson, alto saxophone, formerly from St John’s Academy and now doing a final year at Douglas Academy; Jamie Turnbull, piano, from Crieff High School and Eliza Younger, piano, from Kilgraston School. The standard required is Grade 8 and beyond and the choice of music was wide ranging and imaginative. We had two outstanding winners, Murphy and Eliza. We wish all the participants well and encourage them to pursue their music in the future at whatever level they choose. We acknowledge the generous support of the Jimmie Cairncross Trust and members of Perth Chamber Music which makes the competition possible.

Bursary Finalists 2014
2014 Finalists

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2014

Four young musicians took part in the 2014 Final Auditions, held in St. John’s Academy, Perth on 2 March. Craig Scrimgeour (Perth Academy - trumpet and violin), Murphy Robertson (St. John’s Academy - alto saxophone) and Amy Smart (Morrison’s Academy - cello) each gave fine performances of concerto movements and solo pieces, ranging from Vivaldi and Hummel to Saint-Saens and Rachmaninov. The fourth recital by Connor Sinclair (Crieff High School) was the first appearance of a piper in the competition. His programme of reels and strathspeys brought the afternoon to a rousing climax.

Chairman of the judging panel, Peter Rutterford, commented on the high standard of performance. Bursaries were awarded to all four finalists, with the First Bursary of £300 going to cellist Amy Smart. The generous support of The Jimmie Cairncross Trust and members of Perth Chamber Music is gratefully acknowledged.

First Bursary Winner 2013
Harrison White
2013 First Bursary Winner

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2013

Perth Chamber Music's 2012/13 Jubilee competition came to its climax when the Final Auditions were held on 10 March 2013 at St John's Academy Perth.

The competition celebrates the music society's sixtieth birthday reached in 2008, and provides bursaries for the region's most talented young musicians. The finalists - cellist Amy Smart of Morrison's Academy, Crieff and horn player Eleanor Figures and drummer Harrison White (both Perth High School) - treated the audience to three impressive recitals. This year brought something new to the competition with an exciting first appearance of drum kit and French horn.

The panel of adjudicators, Peter Rutterford, Lesley-Ann Smith and James Waters, awarded the First Bursary to Harrison White and Second Bursaries to Amy Smart and Eleanor Figures.

Perth Chamber Music acknowledges the generous support of Society members, Perth and Kinross Council and Concorde Music Shop towards this event.

Bursary Finalists 2012
2012 Finalists

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2012

This year's final auditions were held on 11 March 2012 at St John's Academy, Perth. Although the format has remained largely the same, each year brings something new.

In 2012, four instruments made their first appearance - tuba, trumpet, viola and saxophone, alongside violin, oboe and cor anglais. At the end of the afternoon of fine playing and exciting programmes, the adjudicators awarded the bursaries to Helena Kay (Perth High School) and Joshua Gibson (Glenalmond College), and finalists' tokens to Clare Ratcliff (Morrison's Academy), Sandra Scott (Perth Academy), and Kate Walker and Thom Bubb (Perth High School).

The two winners, Joshua Gibson and Helena Kay, intend to continue their musical studies at St Mary's Music School, Edinburgh and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London respectively.

Perth Chamber Music wishes to record its thanks to:

  • The adjudicators - Helen McVey, James Waters and Peter Rutterford (chair)
  • The six finalists and their accompanists
  • Allan Young on behalf of Perth and Kinross Council
  • The Cairncross and Thomson Trusts
  • Concorde Music Shop
  • And finally our subscribers whose generous financial support has made possible the continuation of the Jubilee Bursary Awards
Bursary Winners 2011
Amy Forbes and Fiona Scott
2011 Winners

Report on Jubilee Bursary Awards 2011

"Classical music has given me the chance to perform and express myself through wonderfully crafted music alongside other gifted players."

This quote from one of the 2011 finalists perfectly sums up the purpose of the Jubilee Bursary Awards and the enthusiasm shown at this year's Final Auditions. Held on 27 February 2011, the Finals brought together two oboists, a pianist, a flautist and a violinist-cum-singer. Their CVs revealed impressive achievements: all are at Grade 8 standard, all contribute to music-making at local level in school groups and Perth Youth Orchestra, and at national level in the RSAMD Junior Academy, the National Youth Wind Orchestra of Great Britain and the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland.

The five finalists were Ciara Elwis (Kinross), Amy Forbes, Fiona Scott, Anna Seaton (all Perth) and Sandra Scott (Scone). Their twenty minute recitals included concerti by Bach and Handel, Debussy's Syrinx for unaccompanied flute, a Mozart Adagio for cor anglais and songs by Mendelssohn and Bernstein. For the first time the venue was the new St John's Academy on the North Inch Campus.

At the end of the afternoon, the panel of independent adjudicators awarded the two bursaries, each of �250, to Amy Forbes (Perth Academy) and Fiona Scott (Perth High School).

Contact

Dr Malcolm Moore:
bursary@perthchambermusic.org.uk