Three Manx trumpet players at the BBC Proms 2020 Live series

Three Manx trumpet players performed in two consecutive BBC Proms concerts (in socially-distanced orchestras with no audience present) at the Royal Albert Hall in September 2020. Despite the shortening of this year’s Proms season, Manx trumpeters were key players at the world’s biggest classical music festival. 

Jason Evans took centre stage to perform the strongly-featured trumpet part in Dmitri Shostakovich’s Concerto for piano, trumpet and strings (Piano Concerto No. 1) with the Philharmonia Orchestra and the pianist Benjamin Grosvenor on Wednesday 9th September 2020.

One day on, and another Prom featured more Manx trumpet talent. This time not one, but two Manx trumpet players. Russell Gilmour and Sam Kinrade both played first trumpet with the Aurora Orchestra on Thursday 10th of September 2020. The orchestra performed a new work by the British composer Richard Ayres, exploring the effects of hearing loss. After an educational ‘guided tour’ of the final piece, the Prom culminated with a memorised performance of Beethoven’s rhythmic Seventh Symphony in which the two Manx trumpet players played on natural trumpets (trumpets without valves that would have been familiar to Beethoven). 2020 marks 250 years since Beethoven’s birth and the Proms celebrated its 125th anniversary. Incidentally, Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony was the last piece that Proms founder Sir Henry Wood conducted before his death in 1944. 


L-R: Jason Evans (photo credit - Marina Vidor, Philharmonia Orchestra), Russell Gilmour (photo credit - Nick Gilbert) & Sam Kinrade (photo credit - Dr. Joe Kinrade).  

All three players are exceptionally proud of their Manx heritage, and praise the island’s excellent support for the arts and musical education. Jason Evans formerly played with the Castletown Metropolitan Silver Band and Manx Youth Orchestra before going on to study at Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Academy of Music. Russell Gilmour learnt to play with Gordon Astill and others in Onchan Silver Band, Paul Dunderdale in the Isle of Man Wind Orchestra and Bernard Osborne and Graham Kirkland in the Manx Youth Orchestra. He had lessons with Steve Wortley in the Isle of Man Department of Education’s Music Service at St. Thomas’ and St. Ninian’s before studying at the Royal Northern College of Music and Royal College of Music. Sam Kinrade learnt to play with Ray Gillis in Ramsey Town Band before studying at Chetham’s School of Music, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Royal College of Music. It is extraordinary that three Manx trumpet players are each pursuing such successful careers in music, having enjoyed different musical upbringings in various parts of the island, and further afield.

Russell Gilmour
Russell Gilmour Blog
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