ROTARIANS in Bognor Regis have presented their initial first prize in a county music competition.
The town’s Rotary Club took over sponsorship of the annual tournament after the county council’s youth budget was cut.
The club had previously sponsored the second prize in memory of Rotarian John Atkins, a former county director of music.
This year’s competition saw the final held for the tenth year running at the Regis School of Music in Sudley Road in Bognor.
Rotary press officer David Cousins said: “There were four finalists and the standard was exceptionally high.
“All were attending one of the musical academies in their spare time and were heading for careers as professional musicians.”
Pianist Timothy Rumsey, 14, from Bishop Luffa School, won the competition. He was presented with his prize by David Wheeler, president of the Rotary club.
The finalists consisted of two pianists, a violinist and a guitarist.
“The music had been chosen to show off their talents to the maximum, ranging from Bach, Liszt and Schumann to Gershwin and Poulenc,” said Mr Cousins.
The preliminary round of the competition was held in January and the final took place earlier this month.
Also present at the event were the Rotary club’s secretary, Neil Holloway, fellow member Dr Malcolm Ridley and their wives.
The audience was also entertained by a recital by nine-year-old Poppy McGhee, a pupil at Prebendal School in Chichester.
At the age of eight, she had passed her Associated Board grade eight violin exam with distinction.
She had been highly commended in the competition’s first round and played while the judges deliberated.
Mr Cousins said: “She breezed effortlessly and accurately through a piece of John Williams film music on her half-sized violin, a little girl showing such poise and confidence.
“It was pointed out she also played the piano, oboe and recorder.”
She was presented with a special prize by Dr Ridley. He commented he was sure she would have her name in spotlights in the years to come.