This prize is awarded by Cardiff University School of Music to ‘the most deserving string player (violin, viola, cello, double bass or harp) in the second or final year of his/her BMus or BA degree programme’.
Neville John’s daughter, Delyth, was invited to join the National Youth Orchestra of Wales in 1982 at the age of 17 and was selected to perform the viola solo part in Elgar’s Enigma Variations that year. She won the NYOW string prize the same year and continued to lead the viola section for a further 3 years. She now plays viola with ENO at the London Coliseum.
With four accomplished string players in his family, all of them BMus graduates of Cardiff University, Neville felt the need for a prize similar to that of NYOW. In 2005 he met Dr Robin Stowell, head of the Music School at Cardiff and himself a brilliant violinist, and they agree to establish a string prize in his name.
The first recipient in 2006 was Nancie Eloise Gynn, a cellist from Cornwall.