An Evening at Lauderdale House

On Tuesday 22 March 2022 three of our Award winners performed to an audience of AYM supporters and specially invited guests at Lauderdale House in Highgate, London. It was a wonderful event with a great atmosphere and jaw dropping musicianship. We also launched the first phase of our Champions for Children campaign.  

Our performers for the evening were 12-year-old cellist Avram, 18-year-old bassoonist Betty and 12-year-old pianist Celeste. Avram kindly replaced Noah, who wasn’t well and so couldn’t perform for us this time. 

Betty and Avram were accompanied by pianist Jinah Shim. 


Avram loves the many unique voices of the cello, with its wide range, its human qualities, and its ability to convey every mood from fun to sadness. His greatest wish is to find like-minded musicians to play chamber music with; as well as continuing to dedicate himself to exploring solo cello technique and repertoire. Avram played at AYM’s 1901 Arts Club event last autumn, and he was delighted to be asked to perform again.

“I was surprised and excited when AYM asked me at the last minute to come and perform. Sharing music in a beautiful space was an unexpected treat – and it was great to meet the audience afterwards. Their generosity helps me to pursue my dreams, so I was very glad to find out about them, and to thank them in person. I even got to meet Michael Lewin – who told me the amazing story about how AYM was founded!” 

Avram’s mother Claire says:   

“AYM seems to know exactly how to combine giving its young musicians opportunities to play, and its donors opportunities to come together, enjoy themselves and mingle. The young musicians were wonderful – although I suspect the star of the show was the mother who got up and spoke with such spontaneous passion about how AYM had saved her daughter’s music-making by funding a much-needed instrument.” 

Avram delivered a moving performance of Ernest Bloch’s ‘Prayer’ from Jewish Life and Joachim Stutschewsky’s Bessarabic Hassidic Song from Hassidic Suite.


Our second performer was bassoonist Betty (18). Betty’s Birmingham upbringing was surrounded by music and drama. She was one of only two pupils who opted for music service lessons on the bassoon and immediately fell in love with it, not realising at the time that it was an endangered instrument.  Unfortunately for Betty, her first public bassoon solo a year later, aged ten, was hampered by her choice of clothing. Wearing her school uniform to look smart at the concert, Betty’s tie got stuck in one of the bassoon keys and stopped that particular note from working, much to Betty’s horror!  

With AYM’s support she recently purchased her very own bassoon which she performed on for the event.  

 “I never thought that I would own my own bassoon, and I wouldn’t have been able to buy it without the David Kaye Award. I really enjoyed giving the new bassoon its first proper outing at the event and demonstrating what it can do, as I feel it’s quite an underused solo instrument. Everyone was so kind to me and seemed genuinely interested in my musical journey and my plans for the future.” 

Her mother Alison gave a great speech about Betty’s musical journey thus far and the support AYM has offered.  

“When I was first invited to speak as a parent at the AYM event I wasn’t sure whether I should or not but I’m glad I did. We had a great time, I loved watching the excellent performers, the AYM staff were so nice to us and I felt in very safe hands with Hester (AYM’s Chief Executive) hosting the event. It was a warm and receptive audience and it was important to share first-hand the difference it has made getting financial help from AYM as it might encourage someone to make a donation to help another young talented musician who needs it.” 

Betty is currently pursuing music at university in the autumn and has had many offers, including a place at Cambridge University. 

She showcased her abilities on her new bassoon playing Carl Maria von Weber’s ‘Bassoon Concerto in F Major Op. 75’ and Gabriel Piernes ‘Solo de Concert Op.35’.


Rounding off the evening was Celeste with a blistering rendition of Chopin’s Scherzo No.1 in B minor. Possessing a technical ability far beyond her years, there is no doubt in Celeste’s mind that she will become a concert pianist. Starting piano at a very young age, Celeste had her Granny to thank for buying her a small instrument and giving her plenty of encouragement and guidance. Although she sings and plays in a piano duet, it is her solo work that is getting all her energy and focus as she prepares for three international competitions this year!  

Celeste said 

“I really liked the event because I had a chance to play among other musicians and to experience playing in a proper concert! Thank you AYM!” 

Her mother, Elena, said 

“Thank you, AYM, for inviting Celeste to the concert and organising everything so well. We did enjoy a warm and friendly atmosphere which is so crucial for young musicians!” 

The evening finished with refreshments and the opportunity for donors to speak to the young musicians. More photos from the event can be found at the bottom of this page. Thanks to all our generous donors and the young performers. We look forward to seeing where their musical journeys lead next.

We have several events planned for 2022 including a very special event in September with details to be announced soon. Make sure you subscribe to our mailing list for updates.


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