Shane's blowing his own trumpet

PUBLISHED: 18:09 09 June 2008 | UPDATED: 21:29 31 May 2010

Shane Brennan

Shane Brennan

A TALENTED youngster, who is not shy about blowing his own trumpet, will battle it out for a top music prize. Trumpeter Shane Brennan, from Horn Brook in Saffron Walden, will compete against the finest musicians in the county for the title of Essex Young

A TALENTED youngster, who is not shy about blowing his own trumpet, will battle it out for a top music prize.

Trumpeter Shane Brennan, from Horn Brook in Saffron Walden, will compete against the finest musicians in the county for the title of Essex Young Musician of the Year 2008.

The accomplished 19-year-old said he was "looking forward" to the first round of the competition which begins next Sunday (June 22). "It will be a challenge to play in front of a panel of judges, but performing to an audience is something I'm getting used to," he said.

First picking up a trumpet when he was only five years old and a pupil at St Mary's Primary School in Saffron Walden, Shane soon realised he had a gift for the instrument.

Under the tuition of master trumpeter Paul Mayes at Saffron Walden County High School, Shane continued his progression with the instrument and he now hopes to have a career as a trumpet player.

"I'm now half-way through my four-year course, studying the trumpet at the Royal College of Music," said Shane. "I'm learning the trumpet and the natural, or Baroque, trumpet which has no valves and all the work is done with the lips."

The Essex Musician of the Year is celebrating its 25th anniversary. The event was started by distinguished Essex pianist John Lill CBE.

Although the age limit is 25, the competition has been won by a 10-year-old pianist, Benjamin Grosvenor, in 2003 and 12-year-old violinist Victoria Goldsmith the following year.

The panel of professional judges ensures that the standard is kept high. This year they are Marianne Olyver (violin), Jane Webster (soprano), Neil Black (oboe), Stephen Bell (horn and conductor), Roderick Elms (piano), Simon Channing (flute) and one other to be announced.

If Shane is successful in the first round of the competition he will compete in the semi-final and final on Sunday June 29.

In this year's event there are 16 competitors from across Essex aged between 16 and 24. Many musical disciplines are represented including the piano, cello, violin, tuba, flute, oboe, mezzo and baritone.

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