BSSC’s Musician of the Year, David Stockwell, first picked up a set of drumsticks when he was in Year Five at Weeroona College.

It was with an almost ‘take it or leave it’ approach, that David first had a go at a musical instrument. He was encouraged to try drums by Gavin Moncrieff… who is still his teacher today.

“I guess I stayed with drums because I found percussion more fun than other instruments,” he reflects.

And while percussion is still fun, David is also conscious of the challenge of constantly keeping perfect rhythm—something the musicians he plays with rely on.

He drums with a number of groups including a blues and roots band, a jazz ensemble and the Bendigo Colleges’ Symphonic Band which is presently in recess due to coronavirus.

David is no diva when it comes to music choices and is happy to play whatever is put in front of him. His own musical taste is just as broad and he enjoys listening to a whole range of styles and genres.

With the competition moving online this year due to Covid-19 restrictions, students had to adapt their performances. The announcement he had won Musician of the Year 2020, playing Alexander Tcherepnin’s ‘Timpani Sonatina’ came as quite a shock.

“I worked hard on the performance, but I mostly entered the competition at Gavin’s urging,” he admits.  “Rehearsing with pianist, Cheryl Long, really helped me develop the piece.”

With aspirations to pursue music—preferably at Monash University—David has studied Music Style and Composition, and Music Performance this year.

His percussion repertoire has expanded throughout his two years at the college. These days, he not only plays the standard drum kit and the timpani, but also the xylophone.

Congratulations David! We wish you well in your musical future.