The Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year (IFYM) takes place this week and current holder Amy Gillen reckons it offers 'many opportunities' for the ultimate winner.
The 23-year-old Donegal native has enjoyed a busy year since picking up the prize 12 months ago, including performances with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra at the NCH in June.
"Winning the 2018 Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year was a prestigious moment for me," she says. "It culminated in years of hard work and determination. Being awarded this title was a huge honour.
"Winning the IFYM has given me many performance opportunities. The first of which was playing as soloist with the RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra on the main stage in the National Concert Hall, which was broadcast live on RTÉ Lyric FM and presented by Liz Nolan."
Amy is a graduate of the Royal Irish Academy of Music in Dublin, and is currently studying for a Masters in Music Performance at the Royal College of Music in London.
She's also a big supporter of Lyric FM. "The IFYM is sponsored by RTÉ Lyric FM," she says. "Lyric is a vital part of music in Ireland and is hugely important in promoting upcoming musicians, such as winners of the IFYM.
"Through winning the IFYM, I had the opportunity to meet Liz Nolan and to speak with Marty Whelan on Marty in the Morning. All these experiences, as part of winning the IFYMY, have been invaluable opportunities."
This year's Irish Freemasons Young Musician of the Year competition will take place before an international Jury in Freemasons' Hall on Dublin's Molesworth Street from October 10 to 12.