In 2016, Sheku Kanneh-Mason became the first Black musician to win BBC Young Musician of the Year, one of England’s most important music competitions. That honor put him in the spotlight and grabbed the attention of music lovers across the United Kingdom. It also caught the attention of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, who invited him to perform at their wedding.
He was only 19 at the time, yet he had already signed a major recording contract, was featured at the BBC Proms, and in his native city of Nottingham, a double-decker bus was named in his honor.
But Kanneh-Mason’s influence goes beyond the concert hall. In 2018, he quietly made a donation to his former high school that enabled 10 students to continue cello lessons. He’s also an ambassador for Future Talent, an organization that creates opportunities by breaking down barriers and harnessing the power of music to transform the lives of young musicians in the UK.
Additionally, he’s a part of Music Masters, an organization that promotes access to high-quality music education in disadvantaged communities.
Kanneh-Mason is a genuine classical music superstar who grabbed the spotlight early, but what’s most important to him is the music, the cello and music education.
Host: Vernon Neal
Producer: Dan Nass
Writers: Andrea Blain and Scott Blankenship
Executive Producer: Julie Amacher
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