Youngsters to write Classic FM birthday music

Classic FM has picked seven young composers, all aged under 25, to write a new piece of classical music to mark the station’s 25th birthday this year.

The Global station turns 25 on 7th September 2017, and has run the commissioning process to select composers together with the Royal Philharmonic Society.

Almost 200 people applied for the process, with the winning composers selected aged between 16 and 23. Each will be paid for their work, which will be recorded and broadcast on Classic FM. Some of the pieces will also be played at live events to mark Classic’s FM’s birthday.

The winners are: Alexander Woolf (21) and Alexia Sloane (16) from Cambridge; Jack Pepper (17) from Epsom; Benjamin Rimmer (23) from Stamford in Lincolnshire; Dani Howard (23), who was born in Hong Kong and now lives in London, Marco Galvani (22) from Prenton on the Wirral and Oliver Muxworthy (23) from Uckfield in East Sussex.

Any person born on or after Classic FM’s launch date of 7th September 1992 could apply. Entrants needed to demonstrate an ability to write accessible classical music, for varying sizes of ensemble, ranging from full orchestra, brass and choral ensembles, to flute and piano. Each work was then reviewed by a panel of judges.

Rosemary Johnson, executive director of the Royal Philharmonic Society, said: “How exciting it is to give these very young creative people such an interesting challenge and the opportunity to write for such big audiences. They have all demonstrated how up for it they are!”

Sam Jackson, Classic FM’s managing editor told RadioToday: “Over 350,000 Classic FM listeners are younger than the station itself – and in this, our 25th birthday year, we’re so excited to be showcasing the music of these seven brilliant composers to our wider audience of 5.4 million people. The Royal Philharmonic Society very much shares Classic FM’s mission of bringing classical music to as many people as possible, and their support of new music is second to none. Together, we’re looking forward to seeing how these young musicians rise to the challenge of composing for Classic FM!”

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