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Alchemea alumni top for audio achievement this awards season

Jimmy Napes, Robbie Nelson and DJ Fresh lead the charge in the London college's strong start to 2015

Graduates of Alchemea College have been out in force this awards season, taking home gongs at the Brits, Grammys and MPG Awards.

Songwriter, producer and 2004 graduate Jimmy Napes (James Napier) contributed to Sam Smith’s Brit Award nods for British Breakthrough Act and British Global Success and nominations for British Album and British Single. Other Alchemea alumni represented at the Brits included Steve Sedgwick (class of 2002), house engineer for British Male Solo Artist nominee Damon Albarn, and Robbie Nelson (class of 2001), who engineered Morning Phase by International Male Solo Artist nominee Beck.

Napes (pictured) was also recognised at the 57th Grammy Awards earlier this month as Smith took home the prestigious prizes for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, Best New Artist and Best Pop Vocal Album. Napes also co-wrote Clean Bandit’s Rather Be, which won a Grammy for Best Dance Recording, while Nelson saw Morning Phase awarded Grammys for Album of the Year, Best Rock Album and Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical.

Nelson (pictured right) was further honoured a few days later at the 2015 Music Producers Guild Awards (see Epworth makes it a hat-trick at Music Producers Guild Awards 2015), winning Breakthrough Engineer of the Year. Fellow alumnus Neil Comber (class of 2003) was also a contender for Sound Engineer of the Year.

“We are incredibly proud to have played a part in our alumni successes,” says Christian Huant, the school’s principal. “All credit goes to their hard work and dedication since completing the course.

“Of course, as education providers, nothing is more gratifying than seeing past students obtaining the highest recognition of their talent and technical prowess available on the international stage. The fact that there are a few of them collectively rising to the top is outstanding. I also feel this could be the tip of the iceberg as we have many very promising graduates rising up to surface right now, so watch this space!”

Another Alchemea student, DJ Fresh (Dan Stein; class of 1997), reached Nº2 in the UK singles chart in the second week of February with his song Gravity, featuring Ella Eyre.