Elen Hydref - Elen Hydref
Elen was born in 1987 and brought up in Porthmadog, North Wales. She started singing in local Eisteddfodau at an early age before learning to play the piano, harp and flute. At the age of sixteen, having studied with Dylan Wyn Rowlands and Elinor Bennett in Wales, Elen began her studies at The Purcell School of Music, followed by the Royal Academy of Music, studying with Skaila Kanga and Catherine White. She graduated with a BMus First Class Honours degree from the Academy in 2011 followed by an MA with distinction and a DipRAM in 2012 which was kindly funded by The Countess of Munster Musical Trust, Arts Council of Wales, Musicians Benevolent Fund and The Arts and Humanities Research Council.
As a soloist, Elen has been performing at venues across the UK and Europe since an early age. At the age of 12 she was chosen to perform in the ABRSM National Concert for High Achievers at Covent Garden. She performed at the European Harp Symposium in Lyon in 2004 and the World Harp Congress in Dublin in 2005. Elen has given recitals at Chichester Festivities, Colston Hall, ‘Harp Masters’ Switzerland and most recently at the 40th Anniversary Festival of Camac Harps in Ancenis, France. In March 2012 she performed Debussy’s ‘Danses’ with The Orchestra of St John’s at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford. Elen is currently on The Countess of Munster Musical Trust Recital Scheme.
Elen’s orchestral work include concerts with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra and the English Philharmonic Orchestra. She was a member of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, the National Youth Orchestra of Wales and attended the 2011 London Sinfonietta Academy. She is currently a member of the Joe Wright Octet and has performed with them in Jazz Venues across London.
Elen has won many prizes in various Eisteddfodau and Gwyliau Cerdd Dant, including the Instrumental Blue Ribband under 16 at the 2002 National Eisteddfod. She was awarded second prize in the 2003 Texaco Young Musician of Wales competition and received the Walter Todds Prize in the 2004 BBC Young Musician of the Year competition. In 2011 she won the Camac Harp Competition in London and the Nansi Richards Scholarship. During her time at The Royal Academy of Music she won several awards including the Guy Magrath Harp Prize and the Renata Scheffel Stein Prize for the best harp final 2011 and 2012. She was a finalist in the Academy’s 2012 Patron’s Award at the Wigmore Hall and was highly commended in the RAM Club Prize 2012. She is a 2012 Martin Musical Scholarship Fund award winner.