It's a Distinction for Harry!

Sixth Form 16-18
Posted on: April 26th 2021

During the final week of the Spring Term, Upper Sixth student, Harry N, sat his ABRSM Performance Diploma examination; a highly demanding qualification that is substantially harder to obtain than Grade 8 in an instrument. The exam requires players to perform a 30 minute recital of music drawn from a repertoire that can be heard in concert halls, played by professional concert pianists.

We are delighted and immensely proud to have learned that Harry passed the exam with flying colours, achieving a Distinction; the highest grade obtainable. Harry’s examiner commented on the fantastic musicality and maturity of his performance, with his recital including works by Beethoven, Chopin, Anthony Payne, Gershwin and Rachmaninoff.

Here’s a few comments from Harry about his preparation and approach leading up to the exam:

“I have decided to take the exam about a year ago and it has taken me many, many hours of intensive work to be ready for it.  I was nervous on the day because two of my pieces by Gershwin were still quite new to me. After a brief conversation with the examiner, I did some last-minute preparation before playing and then off I went. At the start of the recital I was still overwhelmed and nervous as I haven't played in a concert since the pandemic, however I felt more comfortable as I was more focused later on. Eventually, the exam went by quite quickly as I got to my last piece of music without many issues, and it turned out to be more enjoyable than what I thought it would be. Many thanks to Dr Li for her excellent teaching and preparing me for piano exams and recitals throughout my time here, and to Mr Arkell for giving me valuable feedback on my diploma rehearsal!”

Many congratulations to Harry for this superb achievement!