Rathfriland soprano a finalist in Young Musician contest

A YOUNG soprano from Rathfriland has been named a finalist in this year’s Young Musician of the Year competition organsised by the Rotary Club of Comber.

Seventeen year-old Alice Cartmill was among the final 14 in the competition which took place in the Harty Room of Queen’s University, Belfast, earlier this month.

The overall title went to flautist Andrew Douglas from Comber, with Sam Brodison (cornet) from Larne placed second and Zak Hassan (violin) from Ballymoney in third place.

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Adjudicator Philip Hammond complimented all contestants on their hard work and excellent performances and said it was a pleasure to listen to so many young people of different ages perform such a wide range of music.

He said he was looking primarily for musicality and technical ability and found it in every performance but - for him - Andrew’s performance on the flute playing Faure’s Fantasie stood out as the clear winner.

President of the Rotary Club of Comber, Karen McKeown, added, ““As well as providing a valuable platform for young musicians to gain competition experience, this well established contest is an opportunity for the club to raise some much-needed funds for two very deserving charities – the Northern Ireland Music Therapy Trust and the Northern Ireland Cancer Fund for Children.”

The other finalists were: Angus McCall, Belfast; John Gamble, Armagh; Molly Gilmartin, Belfast; Conor Smyth-Small, Spa; Ellen Mawhinney, Newtownabbey; Shannon Moulds, Lisburn; Abigail McLeod, Rasharkin; Eva Richards, Ballymena; Courtney Burns, Newcastle; and Emma Gilmartin, Belfast.