The Mithras Trio, made up of Ionel Manciu violin, Leo Popplewell cello and Dominic Degavino piano won the 67th ROSL Annual Music Competition Strings and Piano Ensemble Section Prize on Tuesday 12 March and were awarded £10,000 and a chance to perform at the Gold Medal Final on 30 May 2019. The Mithras Trio’s 20-minute programme of Arensky and Helen Grime wowed the audience and judging panel. 

Four section finalists were chosen during two rounds of preliminary auditions; Mēla Guitar Quartet, Echéa Quartet, Mithras Trio, and Halcyon Quartet made for an exciting competition as each ensemble chose varied repertoire that put their individual talents and cooperation to the test. The adjudicators Oliver Heath, Gavin Henderson CBE, Geoff Parkin, and Krysia Osostowicz had a difficult decision choosing the ensemble which would take home the £10,000 prize.

Formed of current postgraduate students at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, the Mithras Trio came together in 2017 under the guidance of Matthew Jones, Carole Presland and Ursula Smith. Ionel, Leo and Dominic, all scholarship holders at GSMD, are experienced collaborators, having appeared in the Barbican Hall, City of London Festival, Harmos Festival Portugal, and Orpheus and Bacchus Festival among others.

ROSL Annual Music Competition Section Finals take place each Tuesday 7-9pm at Over-Seas House, Park Place, St James’s Street, London, SW1A 1LR:

  • 12 February: Wind and Percussion – winner Kris Garfitt trombone
  • 19 February: Singers – winner William Thomas bass
  • 26 February: Strings – winner Roberto Ruisi violin
  • 5 March: Keyboard – winner Joseph Havlat piano
  • 12 March: Ensemble A (Strings) – winner Mithras Trio
  • 19 March: Ensemble B (Mixed)
  • 21 March: Overseas Award
  • 30 May: Grand Final held at Queen Elizabeth Hall, London.

Tickets: £16. To book tickets, visit, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 020 7408 0214 ext 219

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Founded in 1910, the Royal Over-Seas League (ROSL) is a non-profit private members' club dedicated to championing international friendship and understanding. ROSL helps artists and musicians across the Commonwealth connect, collaborate and create. Our humanitarian work benefits communities and changes lives.

ROSL ARTS supports talented young artists and musicians from the UK and Commonwealth, providing performance and exhibition opportunities which bring their work to the attention of the professional arts community, media and general public.


The ROSL Annual Music Competition grew out of a series of concerts inaugurated at Over-Seas House London in 1947 under the banner ‘Festival of Commonwealth Youth’. The Festival became competitive in 1952, with a first prize of £10. Over the past 60 years the competition has grown in scope and prestige and now awards in excess of £80,000 for solo performers, accompanists and chamber ensembles. Past ROSL prizewinners make an impressive alumni of musicians of the highest calibre who have established prominent careers in the music profession, find a list of past winners here:

To mark ROSL’s centenary in 2010 an appeal was launched to secure the future endowment of the ROSL Annual Music Competition Awards and Commonwealth Music Scholarships, currently worth £125,000 per annum. The funds are held in the ROSL Golden Jubilee Trust (registered charity 306095). To make a donation contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.