The youngest finalist in a nationwide jazz competition has said that his extraordinary journey has made him more passionate about music than ever before.

Noah Stoneman, 15 from Crouch End, will play the piano in the final of the BBC Young Musician 2016 Jazz Award, having come through the audition stages and will now have the opportunity to play on national television.

Noah, whose parents are both musicians and has played the piano since he was six, says this is the first big competition he has ever played in, but was still feeling pretty relaxed about the outcome.

He says: “It has been a friendly competition so far. Jazz never feels too competitive, it is always more friendly and social and you make some great friends.

“I know how difficult getting into music as a career can be, so it will be fantastic exposure to play on TV. I just wanted to compete, so to reach the final is fantastic – I certainly didn’t anticipate getting this far. Everyone in my academy applied, our tutor encouraged us to, so I hadn’t thought about what I would do if I got to this stage.

“I was in the playground at school when I got a text from my dad saying I had made the final. I told my friends; they were far more excited about me being on TV than about the music I would be playing, but they have all been very supportive.

“I would love to go into a career in music – there is absolutely nothing else I feel so passionate about.”

At 15, Noah is the youngest finalist by a couple of years, but says he feels no pressure and that it is just encouraging that the judges see some talent in him.

He says the secret of success is not just practicing for lessons, but to maintain a passion for music, and by playing with those who are just as enthusiastic about it.

The Jazz Final will be broadcast on BBC Four on Friday 13 May, but will be filmed in March.