Duchess of Cornwall becomes patron of National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain

11 July 2013, 09:42 | Updated: 30 July 2013, 16:21

The NYO are enjoying a year of royal celebrations, kicking off a summer of performances with a new patron.

The NYO are strengthening their royal ties this week, as the Duchess of Cornwall has agreed to support orchestra as patron. She's following in the footsteps of Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, who was the orchestra's royal patron for 49 years from 1953 until 2002.

Dame Liz Forgan, Chair of NYO said: "We are honoured to have the support of The Duchess of Cornwall. Her patronage I’m sure will inspire others to treasure our orchestra as an emblem of what British teenagers, given a chance to develop exceptional talent, can do."

It's been a particularly royal year for the orchestra, who are preparing for a gala concert in Buckingham Palace to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Queen's coronation. In December, they became the first organisation to win the prestigious Queen's Medal for Music, won in the past by eminent musicians including Sir Charles Mackerras, Dame Emma Kirkby, and Sir Colin Davis.

The orchestra will be performing in Northern Ireland for the first time celebrating the commission of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9. Conductor Vasily Petrenko will be taking to the podium to conduct the 400-strong group of teenagers.