Kateryna and her mother fled Ukraine shortly after the war broke out last year, and moved in with a host family in Bristol. There, her talent was quickly recognised and she was offered a place at Clifton College, where she was then encouraged to audition for Junior Academy.
John Hutchins, Director of Junior Academy, said:
‘Kateryna came into audition last year and gave a beautiful performance. Since arriving in Britain she had been practicing on an electric piano at a neighbour’s house, which her hosts had found for her. On visiting the Academy and seeing practice rooms with grand pianos, her face lit up. As she played, I was blown away by her musicality and poise. She has quickly become a valuable member of Junior Academy.’
Kateryna now travels from Bristol every Saturday morning for lessons with pianist Eva Maria Doroszkowska. She was recently interviewed by the BBC, where she talked about her audition and gaining a place at Junior Academy: ‘It’s a dream - when I was in Ukraine I didn't even wish that I would study in London, that I would perform in England, learn at the Royal Academy of Music and Clifton College - it's a good, crazy thing. It was like a big present from England to me and I really enjoyed it. It was a very happy day for me.’
Ukraine Response Fund
Following the invasion of Ukraine in early 2022, the Academy launched a fund in response to the urgent need to support current and prospective students impacted by the conflict. We wanted to ensure that talented musicians impacted by the conflict who needed a way to continue their musical education could come and study with us in London. In some cases, we’ve been able to offer early admission to provide some sanctuary and protection to students who have been forced to flee their home country. We have also supported a number of younger Ukrainian students who were in the UK to train with Junior Academy. This includes supporting with tuition fees and travel costs, helping them to access the best training.
We are incredibly grateful to our donors who have given very generously. If you are interested in donating to the Fund, please click here.
Junior Academy offers a unique opportunity for talented young musicians aged 12-18 to develop all aspects of their musicianship in a creative learning environment – and form strong bonds and lifelong friendships along the way. To find out more about the courses available, click here.
Image courtesy of BBC News