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OB Adam Swayne delivers online piano masterclass

Earlier this term the Music Department welcomed Old Bryanstonian Adam Swayne to deliver an online piano masterclass for the School’s piano pupils and to coach their individual performances.

OB Adam Swayne

Adam is no stranger to Bryanston, having hosted numerous masterclasses over the years, as well as adjudicating a piano competition and playing the Grieg Piano Concerto at the opening of the Tom Wheare Music School in 2014.

A graduate of Manchester and Chicago, Adam is now Deputy Head of Keyboard Studies at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) – one of the world’s most forward-thinking conservatoires.

Will St J-B reports: “Adam started by talking about the background of my performed piece and when it was written. After playing, he gave me feedback on my performance – what was good and where I could improve. While doing this we went through certain areas and practised them so I could secure certain notes and sequences. Overall, the masterclass was useful and constructive, for all my pieces."

Ruihan B-S appreciated learning how to adapt his playing to the style of the composer and commented: “Adam first of all told me a little bit about the background of the composer and a little bit on how the piece was written to suit the way the composer played it. Then, having performed, he told me what I did well and explained what adjustments I could make to sound a little more like it would have been played originally. We then put these adjustments into practice on a few sections of the piece.  Overall, I think the masterclass was very productive, and I feel like I learned a lot from it. I'm sure the feedback I got will come in very useful in the future.”

Head of Keyboard Graham Scott sees these workshops as an important part of pupils’ development, by exposing them to different artists and stimulating their thinking about their future. He commented: “It is always a pleasure to have former pupils return to school and pass on their experiences to the next generation of musicians. Apart from the practical advice pupils received, I hope that his successful career shows our pupils that with hard work and talent they too can achieve great things. We are very grateful that Adam made his time and expertise available and look forward to working with him on more projects in the future.”