Music in the Vale has been very fortunate to have had the support from the Adjudicators listed below in 2017.
We are looking for new Adjudicators each year and would welcome anyone who may be interested to contact us.
Helen Knight was born in Ashford , Kent and after initial tutelage from Janice Chapman graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music where she studied with Nicholas Powell. She began her professional career at Glyndebourne Festival Opera before joining Welsh National Opera, where she has performed many roles, including Olga, Eugene Onegin and Flora in La Traviata. On the concert platform , Helen has given numerous recitals both in the UK and across Europe. As well as teaching at Cardiff University and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama Helen is a member of the examining panel of the Associated Board of the Royal,Schools of Music and works both at home and internationally. She is also a member of the Board's Professional Development Panel.
Owen Webb was brought up in Pontlliw, Swansea and studied at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. While at College he won the Mocsa Young Welsh Singer of the Year Competition and was a finalist in both the Welsh Singers competition and the National Mozart Singing Competition. After graduating he joined the the WNO Chorus, where roles include Harlekin Ariadne auf Naxos, Dancaïre Carmen, Schaunard La bohème and Marullo Rigoletto. Elsewhere roles include Papageno The Magic Flute, Figaro The Marriage of Figaro and Malatesta Don Pasquale. Concert performances include Vaughan Williams’s Sea Symphony at The Bridgewater Hall, Messiah at The Royal Festival Hall and an opera gala at Buckingham Palace. Owen enjoys running and has completed several half marathons and one ultra marathon of 46 miles in the Brecon Beacons raising money for Marie Curie, The British Lung Foundation and Touch Trust. Future engagements include performances with the Scarborough Spa Orchestra.
Horn player David Shillaw is a native of Sunderland and began his musical career as a chorister, being at times a member of the choirs of Truro Cathedral and Westminster Abbey. He read music at the University of Exeter followed by post graduate study at the Royal Academy of Music where he was a pupil of Ifor James. After leaving the Academy he joined the Academy of the BBC based in Bristol and then, in 1977, joined the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera. David has recently retired from WNO after thirty eight years as member of the orchestra. David joined the staff of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in 1984 transferring to the Junior Conservatoire of the college when the junior department was established in 1997. He retired from that position in July 2017.
David was appointed as a magistrate in 1993 and is also the Teasurer of RNLI Porthcawl.
James Walker: attended the Purcell specialist music school from 1964-1969 and then went on to study at the Royal Academy of Music where his tutors were Emanuel Hurwitz (violin), Gwynne Edwards (viola) and Richard Stoker (composition).
At the Royal Academy, James was awarded the Recital Diploma and Alfred Gibson prize for viola playing and the Edward Hecht and Josiah Parker prizes for composition. He also received a scholarship from the Vaughan Williams Trust.
A career as a musician followed with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic, London Philharmonic, London Sinfonietta, Academy of St Martin in the Fields and the London Mozart Players. James was also a member of the Quartet in Residence at Sussex University from 1975-1978. Over a period of fourteen years he gave regular broadcasts for the BBC, ATV and Central Television.
In addition to a career as a performer, James has shared his enthusiasm for music with many young people and from 1982-1990 was Principal Teacher (viola), Senior Teacher and Vice-Principal (strings) at the Leicestershire School of Music.
In 1993 he joined the staff at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama as Head of the Performers Course, later to become founding hear of Junior Music and Access Studies (JMAS), a post he held from 1995 to 1999. He was also a member of the College’s Music Executive, Academic Board and was Staff Governor. His work with JMAS is perhaps of particular note as he leaves behind him a flourishing department whose numbers have trebled in recent times with more than 150 young people studying, on Saturday, in a specialist conservatoire environment.
In 1999 James was awarded a Fellowship of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and in 2008 he was made an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music.