The winner of this year’s Keith Dawber Memorial Bursary has been named as 20 year old Laura Campbell.
Now in its third year, the Bursary aims to give support to young musicians in Guernsey wishing to study instrumental or vocal classical music at university or college. Sponsored by Deutsche Bank, the Bursary is worth £1,500 annually and is intended to assist students with the cost of study materials, books and tuition fees.
Oboe player Laura is currently entering her third year of a four year course in Music Performance at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM). A former student at Ladies’ College, Laura has frequently performed in public as a soloist and a member of various school and other Guernsey-based ensembles. Over the years, she has been a regular entrant in the Guernsey Eisteddfod, while at school she helped conduct the senior choir and organised her House’s entry in the annual House Music Competition.
Despite currently being based in Manchester, Laura still returns home to Guernsey to perform in local concerts whenever possible. When she graduates, Laura hopes to further her musical studies in London and Germany and ultimately, after completing her conservatoire training, become a professional orchestral musician and oboe teacher. As well as playing the oboe, Laura, who was selected for the Bursary following a successful interview process, is also a highly competent vocalist and saxophonist.
Commenting on her bursary award, Laura said:
“Ensembles founded by Keith Dawber, such as the Guernsey Symphony Orchestra, have allowed me to become the musician I am today, and I am hugely grateful for his work in Guernsey and with the Guernsey Music Centre. The bursary will assist greatly towards the essential purchase of a new oboe next year.”
The Bursary was established in 2011 in memory of Keith Dawber, who died shortly before he was due to retire in 2010. Keith joined the Guernsey Schools’ Music Service after arriving in Guernsey in 1979, becoming Head of Strings and working with thousands of young musicians over a period of thirty years. Keith worked tirelessly for the Guernsey Symphony Orchestra to give pupils an opportunity to perform alongside adults and visiting professional players.
Glenda Dawber, Keith’s widow and trustee of the Guernsey Choral Workshop, commented:
“This bursary is all about helping young local musicians achieve their ambitions, and that was something that Keith was incredibly passionate about. Three years after having established the bursary, it is fantastic to see it already helping young musicians fulfil their aspirations to develop exciting and successful careers in classical music. Being a musician is a costly business – having a high quality instrument is vital, and I know Laura will make good use of this bursary with that in mind.”
Andreas Tautscher, Chief Country Officer, Deutsche Bank Channel Islands, added:
“Having for many years been associated with the Guernsey Choral Workshop, behind which Keith was a real driving force, it is evident that there is a huge amount of talent and love of classical music among Guernsey students. Deutsche Bank has a tradition of supporting the arts in Guernsey, so it is fantastic that this bursary is now so firmly established and proving hugely valuable in helping local students realise their artistic ambitions.”
Previous winners of the Keith Dawber Memorial Bursary are Casey-Joe Rumens, who has just completed his four year degree in Performance and Voice at Trinity Laban Conservatoire and is now focusing on auditions for a Masters, and last year’s recipient pianist Tom Hicks, who is currently studying a joint course at The University of Manchester and the RNCM.
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