A YOUNG Wirral violinist has struck the right chords and won a place in the National Children's Orchestra.

Tasmin Lee, from Caldy, was selected to join the prestigious orchestra's training programme following auditions at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.

The nine-year-old, who attends Birkenhead School Prep, took up playing the violin five years ago and is also a popular member of the school's 50-piece Orchestra.

As part of the National Children's Orchestra, Tasmin will attend regular practices and training courses in the North of England to help develop her skills.

She will also get to play in concerts alongside some of the most talented young musicians in the UK.

The NCO's training orchestra is open to seven to 10-year-olds, providing first-class tutoring and facilities for young members.

Tasmin, who is trained in the Suzuki method of violin playing, said: "I was really excited to be picked and have enjoyed my time with the orchestra.

"I was a bit nervous about the auditions, but selected a couple of pieces by Vivaldi and Bohm and played my best.

"I was really pleased with how it went and then, when I got the email to say I had got through, it was a brilliant feeling.

"I've got lots of really good friends in the Prep Orchestra and the best bit is just enjoying playing music together.

"It has been a step-up to the National Orchestra, but I like the challenge and am pushing myself to be the best I can.

"I like the violinists Nigel Kennedy and Nicola Benedetti, but I’m not sure yet if I’d want to play professionally when I’m older."

Tasmin hails from a musical family, with her 11-year-old sister Dionne also a member of the NCO and her mother a talented pianist.

Tasmin said: "I'd like to thank my mum, sister and violin teacher Mrs Panter for helping me to go the extra mile and win a place on the children's orchestra."

Birkenhead School’s Prep music teacher, Sue Keating, said: "We are proud to have a wealth of excellent young musicians at the school and are delighted that Tasmin's skills have been recognised at such a high level.

"Tasmin has excellent technique, but is also able to convey real passion and commitment when she plays.

"She is a great ambassador for Birkenhead School and we look forward to watching her progress.

"In the meantime Tasmin will continue to play a key part in our Prep Orchestra and in our upcoming school concerts.”