Young Wolverhampton musician wins prestigious prize

By Harriet Evans | Wolverhampton | Music | Published:

A young musician's talents have been recognised at a socially distanced ceremony.

District governor Ken Wagstaffe, Rotarian Richard Green, Mayor of Wolverhampton councillor Claire Darke and winner Alice Bennett

Wolverhampton's five Rotary Clubs have presented the annual Young Musician of the Year trophy and cheque to 18-year-old Alice Bennett, who was nominated by Friends of Wolverhampton Music Service and head, Ciaran O'Donnell.

Alice is an accomplished saxophonist and violinist, and also plays the piano and flute, serving as the leader of the Wolverhampton Youth Orchestra and lead saxophone of the Youth Wind Orchestra.

The award is usually given out at the orchestra’s pre-tour concert, however both the tour and concert were cancelled this year as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Instead, the presentation took place in the bandstand at West Park in the presence of the Mayor of Wolverhampton, Councillor Claire Darke, and the Rotary International District Governor, Ken Wagstaffe.

Alice has just finished Year 13 at Wolverhampton Girls High School and is now waiting for her A level results.

In August, she was due to depart for 12-months of overseas volunteering with the charity Project Trust which has now been postponed until early 2021.

After this, she plans to study music and English literature at university.

Richard Green, speaking on behalf of the Rotary Club, said:“This young lady is a credit to all our young people and a perfect illustration of the excellence of the Schools Music Service.

"I predict a very bright future for her. It is an honour and genuine pleasure for Rotarians to recognise and support such musical talent.”

Wolverhampton Music Service, based in Graisley, provides tuition to thousands of the city's young people each year and has been working remotely with students during lockdown.

Harriet Evans

By Harriet Evans
Community Reporter - @HarrietEvans_ES

Community Reporter at the Express & Star, covering the issues affecting young people across the Black Country and Staffordshire. Contact me at

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