Today, we are proud to announce a new award which has been set up in remembrance and to celebrate the life of Future Talent alum Harvey Parker (July 2001 – December 2021).
Creative to the core: Harvey was a gifted writer and musician, kind to the vulnerable, tenacious, determined, independent and brilliantly funny. Non-conforming, not interested in the middle ground, unique, and loved so much. Harvey was deeply and passionately concerned about equity and those who felt at life's margins: they championed inclusive rights for queer and trans people, and for marginalised people.
Harvey mastered flute, oboe, piano and organ, and also sang – with a distinctive sound that reflected his character - a gentle, powerful voice with huge emotional depth.
Harvey was magical, somewhat otherworldly – delicate but with a steely, stubborn mind about what he cared for, and unwavering from a chosen path. This tenacity was part of his neurodivergent perspective – Harvey saw the world very differently, which made the world at times difficult to navigate.
Harvey enjoyed spectacle and socialising, exploring and taking ownership of their gender fluidity - and dazzling at a photo shoot for Lanvin. Harvey embraced colour, spectacle, ambiguity. They were a regular at Heaven and G-A-Y, where they were popular and made great friends.
At York University where Harvey was studying music, friends would contact him to go out at the end of the week, to find he was already in Leeds clubbing there, or London packing in sometimes several gigs in one night, and almost always a gig then a club.
Future Talent wants to celebrate the life of Harvey and to shine a light on their memory with the annual Harvey Parker Award to a talented teenage woodwind player from a low-income background. This award will be made in September each year following an annual audition process.
The award will provide £2,000 towards the recipient’s musical costs, such as tuition, courses, instrument purchase, hire or repair, sheet music or other equipment.
The new award is sponsored by the co-founders of 3812 Gallery in London, Calvin Hui and Mark Peaker. They said:
“3812 Gallery is immensely proud of the opportunity to sponsor the newly created Future Talent Harvey Parker Award for Woodwind.
"Harvey represented the brilliance of life, one that shone brightly yet sadly an illumination that dimmed far too soon. Yet their legacy survives, and we are delighted to bring together worlds that Harvey cherished, art and music.
“The inspiration Harvey derived from their own limitless talent shall continue to inspire others as they are embraced by the worlds of visual art and music, environments that transcend as they lift our feelings and emotions, connecting our mind, our soul and unleashing our imagination.
"3812 Gallery's support of Harvey's award will offer a unique platform for future talents to shine as they discover the best of their artistic talent encouraging themselves and other young people to pursue their dreams.
"It is a journey, in Harvey's memory, of which we are honoured to be a part.”
Chairman and co-founder of Future Talent, Nick Robinson, added:
“This new award will be a fitting tribute to Harvey as we look to the future whilst at the same time honouring our memories of Harvey. I am delighted to be working closely with 3812 Gallery as we plan an annual concert to be held at the gallery to celebrate art and music, with a performance by the winner of the award.”
The Harvey Parker Trust is being set up to support creative young talent from marginalised backgrounds who experience mental health issues. The Trust aims to host a fundraising concert in Spring 2023 to celebrate Harvey's life and raise awareness of the challenges facing young, diverse creatives.
To make a donation to the Harvey Parker Trust, please visit the website.
Clare Cook joins Future Talent bringing a wealth of experience in the music education sector and expertise in strategic leadership, fundraising and communications.
Since our foundation in 2004, our vision has been to achieve an equal reality for young musicians across the UK, regardless of their financial background. We continue to strive towards this goal today.