TALENTED young musicians at the John Masefield High School have been enjoying masterclasses this winter with a renowned solo pianist.

Youngsters have enjoyed lessons with William Howard and will, today, give a concert alongside Mr Howard at the prestigious venue of Hellens in Much Marcle.

Music teacher Sam Goldup said: “We are extremely privileged that for the past few months the music department has been working with William Howard, renowned solo pianist formerly of The Schubert Ensemble, kindly organised by Hellens.

"A piano quartet consisting of four pupils from years 8, 10, 11 and 12 have been rehearsing a modern piece by Judith Weir in their own time.

"William worked on the piece with them in November, and returned last week to hear their progress and help them improve further.”

Mrs Goldup added: “William also gave a composition workshop to GCSE music students in November, followed up last week with a session where he played some compositions that year 10 students had written inspired by the first session.

"He gave them all feedback, and some finished compositions will be selected to be performed by William at the concert that will be the culmination of the project.”

The piano quartet will perform the piece they have been working on, along with choral performances from the high school’s Chamber Choir, Senior Chamber Choir, Full Choir and a flute duet at the event at 7pm in Hellens.

Mrs Goldup added: “William Howard will also perform some of his own repertoire as well as performing the selected compositions by our students.

"The concert is free to attend and will be a fantastic celebration of the work that students have been doing over the last term.”

The John Masefield High School piano quartet includes Jack Bloomer on piano, David Balthazar on violin, Eleanor Morley on viola and Isabelle Inman on cello.