BBC Young Musician 2020 finals to be broadcast a year on

Harriet Clifford
Wednesday, April 14, 2021

The Semi Final will go out on 30 April and the Grand Final will be broadcast at the beginning of May, nearly a year after the category finals were broadcast.

Coco Tomita, category winner
Coco Tomita, category winner


The final two rounds of BBC Young Musician 2020 are to be broadcast within the next month on BBC Four, with the Grand Final also played on BBC Radio 3. 

In the broadcast on 30 April, five young musicians will compete in the pre-recorded Semi Final, which took place pre-Covid in March 2020 at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (RWCMD). The category winners playing for one of three places in the Grand Final are: Annemarie Federle, 18, French horn; Coco Tomita, 19, violin ; Ewan Millar, 18, oboe; Fang Zhang, 17, percussion; and Thomas Luke, 17, piano.

Introduced by organist, conductor, and music education advocate Anna Lapwood, the performances by the semi-finalists will be judged by a panel chaired by chief executive of Saffron Hall Angela Dixon.

The judging panel also includes director of BBC National Orchestra and Choir of Wales Lisa Tregale, composer John Hardy, and double-bassist and founder and artistic director of Chineke! Orchestra Chi-chi Nwanoku, who will select the three musicians progressing to the Grand Final.

Recorded without an audience later this month at Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, the Grand Final will be broadcast on BBC Four and BBC Radio 3 over the first weekend of May (dates TBC). 

The three finalists will be accompanied by a reduced BBC Philharmonic conducted by Mark Wigglesworth, performing to a judging panel including composer, clarinettist and BBC Young Musician 2006 winner Mark Simpson, composer Errollyn Wallen, principal conductor with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales Ryan Bancroft, and experimental composer and turntable artist Shiva Feshareki.

BBC Young Musician executive editor Paul Bullock says: ‘It’s so exciting to be talking about the Grand Final of the BBC Young Musician 2020. Everyone involved is so looking forward to hearing the musicians play once again – one year on! 

‘Within days of filming the Semi Final the UK was in full lockdown and for a while we wondered when it would be possible to stage the 2020 Final at all. 

‘The Final of BBC Young Musician is always something special and after such a long wait for this one, I’m sure it will only feel more special than ever.’

The Semi Final and Grand Final will be available to watch on BBC iPlayer for 12 months after initial broadcast, with audio from the Grand Final available on BBC Sounds for 30 days.