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Royal Wedding: Musician Kim in tune with royalty

PUBLISHED: 08:30 29 April 2011

Kim Easter, in uniform, during the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace

Kim Easter, in uniform, during the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace

Archant

MILLIONS will be watching on television, and thousands more from the streets of London.

But talented musician Kim Easter will be getting a very special close-up view of the the Royal Wedding celebrations today – when she performs in a special concert at Buckingham Palace.

Kim, 25, is principal clarinetist for the Band of the Welsh Guards, which is putting on the performance to celebrate the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. The regimental band has also produced an album called A Royal Tribute, which has been released to coincide with the occasion.

Kim, who attended Carlton Colville Primary School and Gisleham Middle before moving on to Sir John Leman at Beccles admitted it was exciting to be playing such a pivotal role in the celebrations.

“We are really looking forward to it. It should be a really good day,” said Kim, whose parents live in Worlingham. “We will be playing as the couple come back into the palace after they have got married.”

Kim has been in the Band of the Welsh Guards, based at Wellington Barracks in London, for just over two years. At 4ft 11in tall, she is the smallest Welsh Guard member ever and her uniform had to be made especially to fit her. And playing outside in full uniform is also not without its challenges.

“We do Trooping the Colour every year, Buckingham Palace garden parties and a lot of other high profile gigs,” she said. “It is a really good experience and we get the opportunity to travel abroad quite a lot.”

“But I did pass out once in mid-winter during Changing the Guard when temperatures plunged to -3C. The uniform is very light but in mid-summer it can be baking hot.”

Kim began playing clarinet at the age of eight and joined the North Suffolk Intermediate Orchestra a year later.

She graduated to the full Suffolk Youth Orchestra at 14 and spent six years as its principal clarinetist.

Her parents Steve and Karen Easter were grateful for the support of various benefactors – particularly the Falconberge Trust of Beccles whose sponsorship helped fund her weekly trips to and from London.

During this time she met the renowned clarinet professor Victoria Soames Samek, who later became her tutor at Trinity College of Music in London, where she qualified with a BA Hons in performance studies in 2008.

During her studies, she was invited to audition for the Band of the Welsh Guards and was offered a position.

She has also been invited to attend a reception of talented young people within the performing arts being hosted by the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh at Buckingham Palace.

Mrs Easter said: “We are incredibly proud. She has worked incredibly hard.”

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