BBC Young Musician 2022 winner announced
Percussionist Jordan Ashman is announced as the winner of BBC Young Musician 2022
Jordan Ashman, an 18-year-old percussionist from Milton, Cambridgeshire, has emerged as the winner of BBC Young Musician 2022.
The announcement was made during the broadcast of the Competition’s Grand Final on BBC Four and BBC Radio 3, on Sunday 9 October at 7pm. The Grand Final was presented by trailblazing saxophonist and broadcaster Jess Gillam (herself a Young Musician finalist, in 2016), plus classical soul pianist, composer and producer Alexis Ffrench, and BBC Young Musician regular Josie d’Arby.
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The second consecutive percussionist to win the award (after Fang Zhang in 2020), Jordan started playing drums at the age of seven, before branching out into percussion. Currently studying at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, he has played with the National Children’s Orchestra, National Youth Orchestra and the National Youth Brass Band.
Jordan scooped the award with a performance of the Percussion Concerto by American composer Jennifer Higdon. The BBC Philharmonic provided the accompaniment, with Mark Wigglesworth as conductor.
The judging panel was chaired by organist and broadcaster Anna Lapwood, and included BBC Radio 3’s Editor for Live Music Emma Bloxham, Southbank Centre’s Head of Classical Music Toks Dada, conductor Ben Gernon, and sitar player, composer and producer Anoushka Shankar.
Jordan Ashman said: 'Taking part in BBC Young Musician 2022 was an incredible experience. Working on the Jennifer Higdon Percussion Concerto with Mark Wigglesworth in the Grand Final, and performing alongside such amazing musicians including the other competitors and the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, was something that I will never forget.
'I was, and still am, really excited to showcase what I and all the different percussion instruments can do, and I hope that I have greatly increased people’s understanding of percussion and that they can see how vibrant, virtuosic, expressive and dynamic the percussion can be,' Jordan added.
'Jordan’s performance started not with loud, flashy playing, but with exquisite, gentle beauty,' Anna Lapwood noted. 'He held the entire room throughout that delicate opening and kept that magic through his whole performance. Jordan combined emotional expression with an easy, assured technique, and moments of brilliance that made all of us catch our breath.
'Throughout the competition, all five finalists demonstrated a bravery and commitment to excellence that was incredibly moving, showing us that tradition and innovation don’t need to be mutually exclusive but can go hand in hand. Bravo to them all, and to all the other extraordinarily talented young musicians who have been a part of this process.'
Filmed on Thursday 29 September at Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, the Grand Final also featured exceptional performances by the other four 2022 BBC Young Musician Category Winners. These were:
- Brass: trumpeter Sasha Canter (19), a Royal Academy of Music student from Oxfordshire
- Keyboard: pianist Ethan Loch (18), currently studying at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
- Woodwind: flautist Sofía Patterson-Gutiérrez (17) from Stockport, in her final year at Chetham’s School of Music
- Strings: viola player Jaren Ziegler (17), a Junior Royal Academy of Music student and A-Level student at University College School
Previous BBC Young Musician winners include celebrated classical music stars such as cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason, violinist Nicola Benedetti, and clarinettist Mark Simpson.
In addition to the coverage on BBC Four and BBC Radio 3, the BBC Young Musician 2022 Grand Final is now available on iPlayer for 12 months, and BBC Sounds for 30 days.
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Steve has been an avid listener of classical music since childhood, and now contributes a variety of features to BBC Music’s magazine and website. He started writing about music as Arts Editor of an Oxford University student newspaper and has continued ever since, serving as Arts Editor on various magazines.