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Armless drummer up for top prize
A TEENAGER born with no lower arms has defied his disability by winning through to the final of the Young Drummer of the Year competition.
Romanian born Cornel Hrisca-Munn, who has lived with his adoptive parents Ken and Doreen Munn in Whittington near Worcester since 1993, is a keen drummer and fought off competition from 441 drummers to get down to the final 12 in yesterday's competition in Leamington Spa.
The 15-year-old, who also has an artificial leg, has been busy practicing as he had to perform a two minute solo, as well as devise a drum part to go with a specially written track and was given a further blues shuffle track to write a drum part for on the day yesterday.
Cornel, who got down to the final 40 in last year's competition, attaches the drum sticks to a special strap to allow him to play.
He said: "Playing drums is a huge part of my life and I cannot wait for the finals as I want to show people that having a few limbs missing doesn't stop me from doing the thing that I love most."
Mrs Munn said: "He is nervous as lots of the other competitors have played in bands and he hasn't had that experience.
"He just plays in the Woodgreen Evangelical Church worship group.
"But he is a brilliant drummer and has done so well to get this far."
Cornel, who attends Blessed Edward Oldcorne RC High School and was awarded the Child of Courage award in 2004 Pride of Britain Awards, is also still busy with his charity - The Cornel Romanian Rehabilitation Centre Trust.
The charity is trying to raise sufficient funds to build, equip and operate a specialist rehabilitation centre for physically disabled people in Constanta, Romania, hoping to make disabled lives better by providing a long term solution with the lack of useable prosthetic devices.
For more information on how to donate visit www.TheCornelTrust.co.uk or call 01905 354363.