Musical mastery rewarded

Three QE musicians have achieved Grade 8 with distinction – the highest possible grade at the highest possible level for instrumental examinations. 

The youngest is Drew Sellis, from Year 9, who is a pianist. Zechi Nwankwo, of Year 10, plays the trumpet. And Year 12 pupil Varun Vassanth, who is the current School Captain, plays the violin.

Cheryl Horne, Director of Music, said: “We've just received the results for the Spring ABRSM [Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music] exams and I am delighted at this considerable achievement by three of our students.”

For his examination, Drew played:

  • J. S. Bach: Allegro in E Minor, No. 20 from Easy Piano Pieces and Dances BWV 1019
  • W. A. Mozart: Allegro con spirito, Sonata in D, K.311, mvt 1
  • Philip Martin: Allegro con brio from The Rainbow Comes and Goes

"I was very pleased with my result, having practised my pieces and scales for so long," he said. Earlier this year, a piece of music written by Drew won the original composition in the Spring Grove Music Festival. He had performed it (playing alto sax) for the judges along with fellow Year 9 pupils Tai Oyama and Bhirammah Ramanohar.

Varun’s examination pieces were:

  • Antonio Vivaldi: Danza Pastorale, Concerto in E, La Primavera, op. 8 no. 1
  • Charles Dancla: Resignation, op. 59
  • John Williams: Remembrances from Three Pieces from Schindler's List

Varun said: "Having played violin since the age of eight, it's something I've been working towards for a long time and I'm very proud of this achievement!"

Zechi played:

  • F. J. Haydn: Allegro, Trumpet Concerto in Eb, mvt 3
  • Jean Hubeau: Spiritual, Sonata for Trumpet, mvt 3
  • Allen Vizzutti: Polka