PUPILS from Hermitage Academy shone in the first round of the Rotary Young Musician of the Year competition, scooping the top two prizes.

The competition was held at Lomond School on Wednesday, November 9 and saw a high standard of talent making the judging tough.

Kristen Polley won the vocal section and Angus Butt on bass trombone topped the instrumental section.

Both students will now go forward to the West of Scotland final at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

This is the second year in which the Helensburgh Rotary Club and the Helensburgh Garelochside Club have joined together to hold the local heat at Lomond.

The competition has four stages, designed to support and encourage the development of musical talent, starting with the local heats, of which the winners advance to the district, then regional and lastly national finals.

The competition aims to offer young people the experience of performing on a stage and showcasing their talent where they receive feedback and assessments by experienced adjudicators.

Local professional musicians Stephen Adam and Derek Clark, were this year’s adjudicators.

Two heads of music, Douglas Fleming at Lomond School and Pamela Fryer at Hermitage, held internal assessments to select two vocalists and two instrumentalists each for the heat.

Around 50 people attended to watch the performers including parents, supporters and Rotarians, who all enjoyed an evening of outstanding performances from the eight very talented musicians who ranged from as young as 12 to 17 years old.

Colin Shannon of Helensburgh Garelochside Rotary Club introduced each performer and after all the performances were over the adjudicators selected their winners and gave an appraisal of their performances.

Bill Jones, president of Helensburgh Rotary Club and Adam Muggoch, the Youth Services convener, presented the entrants with a participation certificate and Kristen Polley and Angus Butt with engraved medals.

Photos: Donald Fullarton