Meet the 2019 RPS Julius Isserlis Scholars

13 May 2019

We are delighted to announce the winners of the 2019 RPS Julius Isserlis Scholarship for instrumentalists pursuing studies abroad.

Awarded biennially, the RPS Julius Isserlis Scholarship offers young instrumentalists aged 15 to 25, who are based in the UK, a life-changing opportunity to undertake further studies at a destination of their choice. The Scholarship can be used in imaginative ways: one may wish to fulfil a course at an international music school or university, or take lessons from a specialist based overseas.

This year, after auditioning an exceptional shortlist of musicians, the panel decided to apportion the scholarship - totalling £35,000 - among four outstanding musicians: Rosa Hartley (violin), Finn Mannion (cello), Ross Montgomery (clarinet), and Milo Harper (harp).

Violinist Rosa Hartley is currently studying for her Masters in Performance at the Royal Academy of Music with Professor György Pauk and holds a First-Class Honours degree from the Royal College of Music, where she learned with Itzhak Rashkovsky. She has performed as Concertmaster and Soloist of the European Union Youth Orchestra, and was recently selected by conductor Ivan Fischer as an Academist of Budapest Festival Orchestra, performing as Assistant Concertmaster on their European tour. Rosa's scholarship will help fund further studies in Berlin for which she is currently planning. To find out more about Rosa, click here.

Irish-Scottish cellist Finn Mannion is our youngest scholar this year at the age of 17. He studies with Ruth Beauchamp at Scotland’s only specialist music school – St Mary’s Music School in Edinburgh – where he was awarded a government-aided place in 2012, aged 10. A regular member of the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland, Finn has been principal cello of both the Junior and the Senior Orchestras. Finn's dream is to study in Germany and his scholarship will go towards scoping future study options there, meeting contacts and attending a range of masterclasses in Germany. Read more about Finn by visiting this page.

Ross Montgomery is a Scottish clarinettist based in London. He has a wealth of orchestral, solo and chamber music experience across the UK and Europe. Following his Master’s at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, he joined Southbank Sinfonia in 2017. This year, Ross will complete an Artist Diploma at the Royal College of Music. He freelances regularly with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and the Scottish Concert Orchestra, and is currently on trial for sub-principal clarinet with BBC Symphony Orchestra. Ross will use his scholarship to pay for lessons in Paris with Pascal Moragues and Nicolas Baldeyrou. To read more about Ross, click here.

Harpist Milo Harper is currently in his final year of undergraduate study at the Royal Academy of Music, taught by Karen Vaughan and Skaila Kanga. As a soloist, he featured at the World Harp Congress in Hong Kong 2017 and was the first harpist to win the North London Festival President's Prize Competition in 2018. He was Principal Harp for the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and the European Union Youth Orchestra 2019 Spring Tour. Milo's scholarship will help fund his Masters at the Mannes School of Music in New York studying with Emmanuel Ceysson. To read more about Milo, click here.

We wish each of our Scholars a fruitful course of study and look forward to sharing their stories with you in the months to come.

The RPS Julius Isserlis Scholarship was generously bequeathed by Cecilia Helen Northcote in the name of the inspirational Russian pianist, composer and teacher, Julius Isserlis. To find out more about the Scholarship and how you can apply in future, please visit this page.


Rosemary Nalden: British viola player and founder of Buskaid, who now directs the thriving stringed-instruments school in Soweto. Awarded RPS Honorary Membership in 2013.


Queen Victoria attended a Philharmonic Society concert conducted by Mendelssohn in 1844.