Young musician seals festival top spot

A GIFTED young musician is celebrating after winning a top slot at one of Suffolk's biggest festivals.At the tender age of 21, Ben Palmer is already an accomplished conductor, composer and trumpet player.

A GIFTED young musician is celebrating after winning a top slot at one of Suffolk's biggest festivals.

At the tender age of 21, Ben Palmer is already an accomplished conductor, composer and trumpet player.

And in May an example of his work will be heard alongside a stellar line-up of highly praised performers during this year's Bury St Edmunds Festival.

The former King Edward VI Upper School pupil, who is now studying for a composition degree at Birmingham University, has already chalked up an impressive list of successes since he began taking music seriously at 15-years-old.


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Just last month Ben's award-winning work Volatile Substances was premiered by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, and this summer he will be travelling to Budapest to conduct a classical tour with the Musical Society Symphony Orchestra.

"I have been exposed to music on a number of levels for many years, and I was inspired to start composing work myself," said Ben, who when not at university likes to spend time at his parent's home in Home Farm Lane, Bury.

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"It has become such a big part of my life and I rarely get time to do anything else, and sometimes I stay up all night working on a piece of music, but it is all more than worthwhile in the end."

Ben's classical composition Carillon will be featured during an afternoon slot during the two-week festival.

"I was approached by the festival organisers who had been told about me by my former teachers at King Edward's school," said Ben.

"I was so pleased because not only does it mean people in Bury, including family and friends, will be able to hear my work, but it is also a great opportunity for someone like me who is trying to embark on a career to be able to have their work played at such a prestigious event."

Festival organiser Nick Wells said: "It is great to be able to invite someone back to Bury who has grown up here but has gone off and is doing so well.

"It is a testament to the talent, strength of music making and creativity in and around Bury, and we are looking forward to hearing Ben's music."

Ben's music can be heard at 1pm on Thursday May 20 when it is played at the Athenaeum in Bury by duo Michael Bawtree and Richard Busch. Tickets are £6 and are available from the festival booking line on 01284 769505.

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