Tyrone Msungi, Aged 11, is from Newham Music Hub and learning the Cello. Recently he gave an outstanidng, inspiring speech about his Scholarship at our fundraising event with the Mayor of London, receiving a well-deserved standing ovation. We are delighted to share the full speech with you below.
"Good afternoon everyone, Mayor Sadiq Khan. My name is Tyrone Musngi and I am 11 years-old and I play the cello. I fell in love with the cello when I heard my older cousin Jordan playing it. I knew straight away it was an instrument I wanted to learn. It wasn't easy to get started with lessons. My school unfortunately doesn't teach the cello although I did learn to play guitar there. My mum had to get me private lessons which I had for an hour on Sundays. We live in Newham so I also jointed an orchestra with Newham Academy of Music which I did on Saturdays. When I was awarded the London Music Fund Scholarship I was so excited and ecstatic. My mum works so hard and sacrifices everything just so I can play the cello and I knew that the Scholarship would take some pressure off her and also help me. They gave me a new cello, and my mentor offered me so much support. I felt so confident and free because my lessons were taken care of and my playing really improved.
I enjoy playing Bach and right now I'm playing Veracini and Faure in preparation for grade 7. In November I auditioned for the Royal College of Music Junior Department. I played two contrasting pieces which were The Swan by Saint-Saens and The Tarantelle by Daniel van Goen. They were grade 5 and grade 8 pieces. I also had to an aural exam, sight-reading and then answer some questions in the end. It was quite intense and I was so nervous but I just did the absolute best that I can. One week later we found out that I was the first and only student accepted in November. It was the best day of my life because I realised one of my dreams and I've only been playing the cello less than two years. I've always been taught that I can achieve anything in life as long as I am willing to work hard for it. My cello teacher Robin says to be a great cellist it takes 10% talent and 90% hard work and you have to be willing to sacrifice something. I had to give up playing basketball because sprained fingers and cello does not mix. I also have to balance it with my school work. I practice for about one to two hours on weekdays and more on weekends. I have to make sure that my academics don't slip because that's the deal I made with my mum. It's important to me too because I like to do well at school and I've been part of the Debate Team and Spelling Bee for competitions. Also as Deputy Head Boy I have to set a good example. I still get to watch or play but only when the work has been done.
All of this is possible because my mum believes in me, supports and encourages me and will do absolutely anything to help me achieve my goals. I'm also lucky to have strong family support from my uncle Tony, auntie Lili and my three cousins who also play classical instruments and always inspire and motivate me. The London Music Fund played a big role. The saw the potential in me and provided me with a platform, the security, the confidence and the freedom to fully embark on my musical journey. Thank you Mr. Mayor and the London Music Fund for helping children like me from a modest background, for allowing us to express ourselves in our music and most of all, for letting us dream. Through my cello I've already experienced some fantastic things. I've been able to go record at Abbey Road Studios with my orchestra. I've performed several times at school and at St George's Church. I'm about to continue my musical education at The Royal College of Music and from there the future is bright, anything is posisble. My next dream and goal is to hopefully be Britain's Young Musician of the Year one day and because of programs like this I am one step closer. Thank you."