Andrew Penny MBE


Andrew Penny MBE was born in Hull and entered the Royal Manchester College of Music in 1971 to study the clarinet with Sidney Fell. He was the first holder of the Rothschild Scholarship in Conducting at the Royal Northern College of Music, studying with Sir Charles Groves and Timothy Reynish, subsequently receiving the Ricordi Prize. He gained invaluable experience with the Opera Unit during this time and was associated with many of the operas presented by the College in its early years both in Manchester and Sadlers Wells Theatre. Since 1992 he has made over thirty recordings for the Naxos and Marco Polo labels, appearing on a further twenty compilations. His complete cycle of the nine symphonies by Arnold was produced in time for the composer’s 80th birthday in October 2001 and became the BBC Music Magazine’s top recommendation. His recordings of eleven Shakespearian Overtures by Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco were released in two volumes on Naxos in 2010. Andrew has been on the Instrumental Music Staff at Hymers College since 1977 and has been Musical Director of the Hull Philharmonic Orchestra since 1982, the longest serving occupier of that post. He is also Chairman of the Beverley Chamber Music Festival and a board member of both the East Riding and Hull Music Education Hubs. He has been the chair of the judges for the East Coast Musician of the Year Competition for the past nine years. He was awarded the MBE for services to music in 2014.

Dr Elaine King


Dr Elaine King is Senior Lecturer in Music at the Department of
Drama and Music, University of Hull. She obtained her licentiate diploma on the piano from the Guildhall School of Music in 1993 and then a BA (hons) degree in Music from the University of Durham in 1995. She was awarded the Michael James Scholarship for gaining the highest marks in examinations and the Eve Myra Kirsch prize for musical excellence.  Afterwards, she achieved a Master’s degree in Music (Theory and Analysis) at King’s College, London, and attended the Royal Academy of Music as a postgraduate student, receiving lessons on the cello from David Smith of the Alberni String Quartet. 

She completed her PhD thesis on ensemble rehearsal and performance at Royal Holloway, University of London in 2000.  Elaine has published widely on different aspects of performance (her recent co-edited books include Music and Gesture in 2006, New Perspectives on Music and Gesture in 2011, and Music and Familiarity, forthcoming). She is a Member of Council of the Royal Musical Association (RMA) and the Conference Secretary for the Society for Education, Music and Psychology Research (SEMPRE). She is an experienced performance tutor and examiner both within and outside the University sector.

Dr Carl Vincent


Dr Carl Vincent is Principal Lecturer in Classical Music (Specialist Study Leader). Carl teaches modules in Performance, Harmony and Counterpoint, Twentieth century History and Analysis, Composition and Principles of Orchestration, Journalism, and Dissertation. Carl studied composition with Philip Wilby at Leeds and privately with Dr Francis Jackson OBE and Sir Malcolm Arnold. His career highlights include the European Brass Band Championship 2006 (Belfast), Gala night commission for Black Dyke Band: A Night at the Movies, and Grassington Festival: Adagio for Strings. Other compositions include Trombone Concerto (pub. Kirklees Music), Prelude and Fugue (written for the Annual Festival of New Organ Music 2007 and performed in London and Lisbon, Fanfare for Organ ( written to commemorate the Royal Canadian College of Organists centenary celebrations). His research interests include Miklos Rozsa and the Hollywood Epic in the 1950s/1960s, The music of Prokofiev in the Soviet Union, and The symphony in England and America in the Twentieth century. Presently he is writing a book that deals with the harmonic concepts used in music of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts, a member of the Prokofiev Foundation (Goldsmiths) and a member of the Film Society (Los Angeles).

David Taylor


David Taylor is the CEO and Founder of the acclaimed Yorkshire Young Sinfonia (YYS). His desire to see innovation in arts education and astute business mind has allowed YYS to flourish in its short existence. David recently led YYS win the Arts and Culture Award at the White Rose Awards 2016, the largest tourism awards in the UK. In 2015, the BBC Radio 4 programme “Birth of an Orchestra” documented the creation of YYS and allowed David to showcase his passion for classical music on the national stage. In addition, both David and YYS have featured in the Telegraph, Classic FM and BBC Radio 3. Prior to his career as an entrepreneur, David taught the cello at the Edward Said National Conservatory of Music in Jerusalem, where he also performed recitals at venues including the Yabous Cultural Centre, the National Conservatory Hall (Jerusalem) and Bethlehem University. He has also performed throughout the UK, including at the Royal Television Awards with Myleene Klass.

Geoff Allanack


Geoff is a freelance musician in great demand with dramatic societies from Newcastle to Sheffield. In addition he works with schools supporting teachers with special responsibilities for music. His main instruments are piano and electronic keyboards although you will see him playing guitar and other instruments from time to time. He holds the post of Musical Director of the Bridlington Spotlight Theatre where he trains and develops local talent in musical theatre. Geoff brings to our judging panel that unique experience highly suited to assess and encourage our “Young Performers of the Year” competitors.