Orpheus Musician of
the Year

Dominic DegavinoThe Orpheus Sinfonia and Richard Carne Trust are delighted to announce Dominic Degavino as the winner of the Orpheus Musician of the Year – Richard Carne Award 2013. Dominic wowed our audience with his talents and received a standing ovation at our Scandinavia concert, a worthy response to an outstanding performance of Grieg’s Piano concerto. We are very happy to be able to encourage such exciting new talent, generously supported by the Richard Carne Trust.

A rising young star and passionate performer, Dominic Degavino was born in July 1995 and grew up in Milton Keynes. He started studying the piano when he was six years old, and soon after gained a place at Chetham’s School of Music, where he studied for eight years.

In recent years, along with performances at a wide range of venues throughout England, Germany and Italy, Dominic has achieved considerable competition success, including appearing as a category finalist in BBC Young Musician 2012, winning the Foundazione Antonio Carlo Monzino prize at the Imola International Piano Awards in Italy, the RNCM Chopin Prize (Junior Category) and first prize in the 2nd Manchester International Concerto Competition. He is also the winner of the 2013 UK Lions Club Music Competition. He has performed with orchestras including the Chethams Symphony Orchestra and Manchester Camerata. Dominic is also a keen chamber musician and jazz pianist, having played in Chethams Big Band for many years, worked as an accompanist in both classical and jazz styles, and performed in a wide variety of ensembles. Dominic is now continuing his studies at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester with teacher Helen Krizos. There, he is the recipient of a prestigious ABRSM Scholarship.

Following our competition Dominic hot-footed over to Istanbul to compete in the European finals of the UK Lions Club Music Competition.

Dominic’s enthusiastic response to our Scandinavia concert reflects his joy of music;
“… what an amazing experience it was to play with your fantastic orchestra. Everyone should be proud not only for the way you all played the Grieg, but also for the whole concert! (I thoroughly enjoyed listening to the second half as well) and not forgetting Orpheus itself - it's a great thing you're able to give young musicians these opportunities!”

We feel sure Dominic is a star of the future and look forward to tracking his progress within the music world.


Previous Winners

Following three rounds of competition of a superb level in October 2012, Tamsin Thorn was named as the winner of the inaugural Orpheus Musician of the Year competition, with Benjamin Baker coming in close second place. Both musicians received a cash prize, generously donated by The Richard Carne Trust.  In the Orpheus Sinfonia concert on 25th October 2012, Tamsin performed the Weber Bassoon Concerto and Benjamin the first movement of the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto, under the baton of Toby Purser to a wowed audience in St George's Hanover Square.  The other finalists were Alberto Casadei, Jun Sasaki and Christopher Graves.


Tamsin Thorn - Bassoon

Formerly Principal Bassoon of The National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, Tamsin achieved a first class degree this year from The Royal College of Music, and has already performed with The LSO, The Philarmonia Orchestra and The Ulster Orchestra. In October 2012 she won the inaugural Orpheus Sinfonia Musician of The Year competition with a performance of Weber’s bassoon concerto, earning the chance to play this at a full concert with the orchestra, and gaining the £ 1.000 prize offered by sponsor, The Richard Carne Trust. Sister of outstanding oboist Suzie Thorn and clarinettist Becky, she and her sisters perform as The Rose Trio, winning the Royal Overseas League prize, and securing a Wigmore Hall debut, in 2011.

Benjamin Baker - Violin

Benjamin was born in New Zealand in 1990. At the age of seven he played with Nigel Kennedy who recommended The Yehudi Menuhin School where he subsequently accepted a scholarship. Benjamin was privileged to be the last student at the school to know the late Lord Menuhin who glowingly wrote him a personal note: 'Knowing you will do wonderfully well'.

At 12 years old he made his concerto debut at the Mozart Festival in Istanbul. Since then he has performed to great acclaim internationally including concerts in Turkey, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, France, Denmark, Sweden and New Zealand as well as major venues in England.

In 2009 Benjamin was the youngest finalist in the prestigious YCAT (Young Concert Artists Trust) Competition at the Wigmore Hall and in May 2011 he was awarded second prize in the Postacchini International Violin Competition in Italy. Most recently in 2012 Benjamin was awarded 1st Prize in the Royal Overseas League Competition string section.

Benjamin currently studies on an ABRSM scholarship at the Royal College of Music with Natasha Boyarsky.