An eighteen year old Swiss-Ukranian student violinist has won Scotland’s national music school’s highly prestigious Directors’ Recital Prize 2019.
Marie-Sophie Baumgartner, was declared the winner of the 19th annual competition following a closely contested final with three other senior soloists from St Mary’s Music School, Edinburgh.
Marie-Sophie played Camille Saint-Saëns, Havanaise in E Major and Eugène Ysaÿe, Sonata No. 4 in E minor, Mvt Allemande.
The other finalists were Finn Mannion, cellist, from Perthshire; Fraser Mason, pianist, from the Borders and Sofia Ros-González, accordionist, from Spain.
Fraser Mason is 16 years old and is from Stow. He started to play piano at the age of seven and went to St Mary’s Music School when he was 10. He currently studies piano with Richard Beauchamp, has participated in a number of masterclasses and was lucky enough to get a lesson with Yuja Wang after a concert and lessons with Steven Osborne (alumnus of St Mary’s Music School) on a piano course.
The four senior finalist soloists competed before a distinguished panel of judges for the award which took place at St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, Edinburgh.
This year’s judges were Jo Buckley, Chief Executive of the Dunedin Consort, Sheila Colvin O.B.E., formerly with the Edinburgh International Festival and the Aldeburgh Foundation and on the boards of the Scottish Ensemble and St Mary’s Music School and Maureen Morrison, managing director of Stringers London and Edinburgh. ex Scottish Chamber Orchestra.
Dr Kenneth Taylor, Headteacher at St Mary’s, said: “This year we had 25 entries for the Directors’ Recital Prize and I would like to congratulate all pupils on their performances. The very high standard we witnessed is a tribute to the hard work, enthusiasm and musicianship of our pupils, their teachers and accompanists. “I congratulate Marie-Sophie on her well-deserved win which is a reflection of her talent and dedication to music.
“The prize is donated annually by the school’s board of directors and provides pupils with experience of public solo performance in a competition situation. For aspiring professional musicians, audiences are vital and I thank everyone who attended to listen and support the four finalists”.