What makes a great musician?

20130917-093725.jpgWhat makes a great musician? Is it sparkling technique or an ability to play slow airs like Aly Bain? Or is it someone who can play a mixture of styles with ease and fit into any situation? Is experience key – can a young musician be great?

As we head into the semi-finals of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award on the 5th October these are the thoughts that our judges have to make as they listen to the young musicians. They then have to argue their points to the other 5 judges who more than likely will have their own opinions on what they’ve just heard.

Judging the Young Trad Award is a really difficult job and the judging sessions after the semi-finals are finished are getting longer and longer. What usually happens is that each judge comes in with their top 6 from the night which is then discussed. If they are lucky they will agree on 2 or 3 finalists. Then the discussion really begins. It is amazing how as a judge you go into the ‘chamber’ thinking that your fellow judges must see things your way because the result is obvious (to you). So many times your jaw drops at what other judges say!

The judges for the 2014 Semis are:

Dave Francis
Brian Miller
Duncan Lyle
Kristan Harvey
Kirsten Smith, BBC Producer
Steven Blake

Good luck!

If you would like to come along to the semi-finals of the Young Trad Award and make your own mind up it’s on Saturday 5th October at 7.30pm start. Tickets are £8 (£6 concessions) available online or at the door.

Hannah Dickson presented with David Roberts Memorial Plate

Emma & Hannah Dickson

Hannah DicksonIn 2006 Hands Up for Trad announced the David Roberts Memorial Plate in memory of David Roberts, an early supporter of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award. The Award celebrates young traditional musicians in the Lanarkshire area who are doing really well and making a name for themselves. In 2013 we are very happy to present this award to Hannah Dickson of Dolphinton near Biggar.

Hannah will be presented with her award at the semi-finals of the BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award in Coulter Hall, Coulter on Saturday 5th October. At this concert musicians from all over Scotland (aged between 16 and 27) will compete for a place in the Young Trad finals which take place in Glasgow in January 2014.

Hannah Dickson started playing fiddle was aged seven under the tutelage of Angus Ramsay. She attended the RSAMD junior academy, becoming a member of the orchestra and choir, and attaining a Grade 5 theory.  She is a member of the popular youth band KODA run by her dad Keith Dickson and enjoys playing gigs with the band including one at T in the Park! Hannah has also performed at several traditional music festivals including NAAFC festival, Perth Accordion Festival, Auchtermuchty Festival and the Highlands and Islands Music and Dance Festival. She also performs regularly at Biggar Accordion and Fiddle Club. She is currently tutored by Gill Simpson and working towards achieving a Grade 8 violin. At weekends, she enjoys working as an assistant at Edinburgh Young Musicians.

If you would like attend the semi-finals of BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician Award you can buy tickets here http://projects.scottishcultureonline.com/youngtrad/events/bbc-radio-scotland-young-traditional-musician-award-semi-finals-concert/

For more information on David Roberts Memorial Plate please visit http://www.scottishcultureonline.com/groups/david-roberts-memorial-plate/

For more information on Hands Up for Trad and their projects please visit http://www.scottishcultureonline.com/hands-up-for-trad/