The result of the 2018 Competition:

Winner Rachel Burnett (saxophone)
Runner Up Latchen Kinghorn-Perry (clarinet)
Third Place Hannah Leighton-Jones (violin)

The winner of the Morag Leech Trophy:
Toby Williamson (piano)

Winner of the Ensemble Competition:
The Warrington String Quartet

A comprehensive set of photographs from the Final can be seen by clicking here



1998 – 2018 twentieth anniversary

The first Warrington Competition for Young Musicians was held in 1998. It was started by a sub-committee of the Warrington Arts Council. It later became an independent body and in 2011 became a Registered Charity (Charity No 1141750) administered by a number of Trustees.

Although there is a competitive element and an eventual winner, the main aim of the Trustees is to ensure that all entrants develop their skills, knowledge, understanding, enjoyment and confidence.
Advice and guidance is given by our accompanists and adjudicators who are all professional musicians.


Each entrant has an individual rehearsal with our accompanist (or they may use their own).


The Trustees encourage entrants to attend the valuable addition of a “Platform and Presentation Skills workshop”, but it is not compulsory. Up to date this has been run by the Artistic Director of a North West Theatre group.

Subsequently, each heat is divided into two parts. Firstly, entrants perform their own choice of pieces in front of a live audience and professional adjudicator (whose instrument is from the orchestral family of the heat taking place), this is then followed by a mini masterclass giving help and advice.


The adjudicator selects one performer to go through to the final. Although this is obviously important to the entrants, the real focus of the heat is to achieve the main aim as shown above. The adjudicator also writes a report for each entrant to take away.

The final consists of all heat 'winners'. There is a panel of adjudicators and the format is similar to the heats except there is no masterclass.It is very interesting to listen again to the performers when they have implemented the advice previously given in the masterclasses.


A winner is selected after the Chairman of adjudicators has explained to the audience how the decision was made and once again given advice of a general nature to all competitors.


With the preparations before the Heats, entrants have the opportunity to get to know each other which helps the Trustees to achieve their secondary aim of presenting a friendly atmosphere so that those taking part enjoy the experience.


Many previous entrants continued their studies at Music Colleges and some are now performing professionally or with amateur orchestras.