Born in Ilkley, Yorkshire, Holly Melia graduated with a first class honours degree from the Royal Northern College of Music having studied with Katherine Baker, Richard Davis and Wissam Boustany. She began playing the flute at the age of eight, winning a scholarship to study at Chetham’s School of Music in 2002.
Holly has given solo recitals at the home of Edvard Grieg in Norway, the Trondheim Chamber Music Festival and the Bridgewater Hall for Remembrance Sunday. She has also played as a concerto soloist around the UK and gave the UK premiere of Lindberg’s Flute Concerto ‘The World of Montuagretta’ with the RNCM Chamber Orchestra.
As a solo artist, Holly was a finalist in the 2013 Royal Overseas League competition. She has won the RNCM concerto competition (2010 and 2013), the RNCM Gold Medal – the highest award for performance at the RNCM (2010), the British Flute Society Performance Plus competition, the Craxton Memorial Award and the Martin Musical Scholarship. In 2007 she was a woodwind semi-finalist in the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition.
Holly is a member of Tempest Flute Trio, winners of the Royal Overseas League Chamber Music Competition 2013. The ensemble won the Nonclassical “Battle of the Bands” competition resulting in an album deal on the Nonclassical record label. They performed as featured artists in the National Flute Association annual convention in Las Vegas, the British Flute Society convention in Manchester and have toured Switzerland where they opened the Lucerne chamber music series.
Orchestral credits include performing with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra, and Holly is on the extra work list with London Philharmonic Orchestra, Halle, BBCNOW and the Welsh National Opera Orchestra. She has had invaluable orchestral training since gaining places on the London Symphony Orchestra’s St. Luke’s Woodwind Academy (2007) and London Sinfonietta Academy (2012).
Did you know? Holly is running the 2014 Oxford Half Marathon as part of a team of 25 Southbank Sinfonia musicians and staff. Find out more >
What is your earliest musical memory?
Not being able to stop crying in one of my first piano lessons (age 6) when I just couldn’t get it right! On a nicer note, I remember when a wind quintet came into my primary school and performed a small concert. It was this particular memory that inspired me to start the flute.
What’s on your playlist right now?
Earth, Wind and Fire, The Emotions, Beyoncé, Christopher Rouse Flute Concerto and Mendelssohn A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Holly’s place in Southbank Sinfonia is generously supported by the Headley Trust.