Hampton finalist in BBC Young Musician 2018

Music

Upper Sixth Former Will Thomas has been named as a category finalist in the BBC Young Musician 2018.

It is the second time that trumpeter Will has reached the finals in this prestigious national contest. He will now compete against four other musicians in the Brass Finals on 19 March, in the hope of reaching the overall finals taking place in May at the Birmingham Conservatoire.

Will started playing the Cornet at the age of eight, and soon added the Trumpet and then Flugelhorn. By the time he was twelve-years-old he had achieved Grade 8 in Trumpet (with Distinction), and was the youngest member of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain.

At the age of 13, Will reached the Brass Finals of the bi-annual BBC Young Musician competition for the first time.You can see one of his performances in the 2014 competition here:

Over the past four years, Will has continued to excel musically, achieving his ARSM in piano with distinction, and a distinction in his DipABRSM on trumpet. Will is also a senior member of the Junior Guildhall School of Music and Drama. In 2017, he won the Guildhall’s most prestigious award The Lutine Prize. At Hampton, Will plays in a number of ensembles and recently set up the jazz/funk band Funktion.

Speaking about being selected for the Brass Category Final for the second time in his short musical career, Will said that he was slightly less nervous this time around:

I am very proud of reaching this stage in the BBC Young Musician competition. Being older and more experienced I hope that I will be a little more relaxed about the competition but there is still a lot of pressure because everyone wants to perform to the best of their ability. However, I love playing the Trumpet and I am very excited about taking part in the contest.

Director of Music at Hampton, Mr Iain Donald, congratulated the talented young trumpeter:

Will is an outstanding musician, and fully deserves his success. He will have plenty of supporters from Hampton School in the audience and we all wish him well for the Brass Final.

Will is the second Hampton musician to reach the final stages of the BBC competition in recent years.  In 2010, Finlay Bain also played in the Brass Finals, performing on the French Horn. Finlay, who graduated from the Royal College of Music and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama, is now a professional musician.