After only learning to play the oboe six years ago, 14-year-old Bridget Parris, from Pinner, can’t believe her luck at being awarded a place in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain 2017.

She will be performing in some of the biggest concert halls in the country alongside 162 other teenagers and is both the youngest trombone player in her section and also the only girl.

Throughout the year, the National Youth Orchestra musicians will take part in three residencies with different music directors, as well as perform eight concerts, play live on BBC Radio 3 and Classic FM and release a new recording of The Planets.

Bridget, who attends Haberdasher's Aske's School for Girls, in Borehamwood, will also be joining her older brother, Bruce, who was also awarded a place in the orchestra.

The 17-year-old, who is a student at Haberdasher's Aske's Boys' School, in Elstree, has been playing the bassoon for eight years and will be travelling round the country as part of the various tours and concerts.

Bridget reveals where her passion for woodwind music began and explains how she will juggle schoolwork with performing in the orchestra…

How does it feel to be awarded a place in the National Youth Orchestra?

We are really excited to be part of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain because it gives us an opportunity to play in an amazing orchestra under professional conductors and to learn from amazing tutors. We are both really looking forward to taking part in tours and concerts with the orchestra over the coming year.

I’m really happy to have been awarded a place, as it is a really great orchestra and next year should be a lot of fun.

Are oboes and bassoons difficult instruments to play?

Every instrument is difficult to learn and requires a lot of hard work and determination, but they are worth it in the end.

What did you have to do in your audition?

There were two rounds of auditions, where I had to play different songs and do workshops with other people who were auditioning too. It was scary, but luckily, it went okay.

Will you perform in the orchestra alongside your studies at school?

Yes, I will be very busy in the New Year and will have to learn how to juggle both my music and my school work.

Do you know which shows you’ll be involved with the orchestra yet?

At Christmas, we will have a few concerts at the Royal Concert Hall and then on January 5, we are at the Royal Concert Hall in Nottingham playing Komarov's Fall by Brett Dean, Szymanowski's Symphony No.4 and Rachmaninov's Symphony No.2. We will be conducted by John Wilson. On the January 6, we are playing at Symphony Hall in Birmingham and on January 7, we are at the Royal Festival Hall in London.

What else do you like to do in your spare time?

Alongside the music, I like to play sports such as tennis.

I’m not sure if I will take up oboe playing as a full time career when I’m older, but I’ll see what happens.

To find out more about the National Youth Orchestra, visit: