Shakespeare Primary School has been crowned Last Choir Singing 2017 County Winner – winning Lancashire’s foremost school singing competition title at the Grand Final event held at King George’s Hall on 16 June.
Over 2,000 singers from 70 school choirs entered the competition this year in heats, which took place across the County. Eleven finalists were whittled down from six heats to make it to the Grand Final.
Shakespeare Primary School from Fleetwood, who took part in the Fylde and North Lancashire heat, beat the ten other finalist choirs to achieve the highly coveted prize in a very close competition, with the runners-up, Norbreck Primary Academy and St Catherine’s Roman Catholic Primary, narrowly missing out on the title.
The Final, presented by International Vocalist Duncan Heather, saw the eleven finalist choirs battle for the title of Last Choir Singing 2017, singing two songs each. The performances were judged by Steve Balsamo (International Singer/Song Writer), Tom Newall (British Conductor), Paul Nuttall (Managing Director, Reidy’s Music Store), Sean Ruane (Classical Opera Singer).
Shakespeare choir, consisting of 41 vocalists, is led by Joanna Newson and Claire Savage, who have been working with the choir for two years.
Comments from the winner and judge:
After receiving the award, Head Teacher, Laura Willan, said: “We are so pleased that our marvellous choir has achieved this recognition. It is just fantastic! All our children have worked extremely hard and shown great dedication, so we are thrilled to get here. It is not only an amazing achievement for us, but also a brilliant opportunity for us to showcase our fantastic school. The competition has brought so much confidence, enjoyment and a real sense of team spirit for our children.”
Competition judge, British Conductor, Tom Newall, said: “All tonight’s finalists performed to the highest standard, they were incredibly impressive. Last Choir Singing is an amazing experience and I have thoroughly enjoyed being a judge at the Final. You can see the enjoyment from each child taking part; it is just wonderful to watch. Events like Last Choir Singing are so important, as they provide a great opportunity for children to express themselves artistically, and make memories they will never forget.
“Shakespeare were exceptional and I was instantly won over by them. Watch out, we could see some of these young singers making a name for themselves in the future.”
Creator, organiser and lead sponsor, True Bearing Chartered Financial Planner’s Chairman, George Critchley said: “On behalf of True Bearing, I wish to extend my congratulations to the winners and all finalists in what has been a competition of the highest calibre.
"I'm very proud of True Bearing's creation and involvement of this much-loved competition, which enables Lancashire junior school choirs from the length and breadth of the county to come together and showcase their talent.”
A live recording of the Grand Final can be heard on BBC Radio Lancashire on Friday 30th June, from 7.30 pm.
This year’s finalists included:
· Park Primary School, Colne
· Edenfield Primary School, Bury
· St Catherine’s R.C. Primary School, Leyland
· Tarleton Holy Trinity Church CE Primary School
· Shakespeare Primary School, Fleetwood
· Carleton Green Community Primary School, Poulton-le-Fylde
· Great Eccleston Copp CE Primary School, Preston
· St Michaels on Wyre C of E Primary School, Preston
· Norbreck Primary Academy, Thornton-Cleveleys
· Anchorsholme Primary Academy, Thornton-Cleveleys
· Forton Primary School, Preston
Norbreck Primary Academy (Thornton-Cleveleys) and St Catherine’s Roman Catholic Primary (Leyland) took home the title of ‘runner-up’. Each sang amazingly well and very much deserved their titles.
The award for Artistic Expression, went to Great Eccleston Copp Church of England Primary School.
Best Newcomer Award
A new award for 2017, this was given to newcomers St Michaels on Wyre C of E Primary School. The choir hadn’t entered the Last Choir Singing competition before and were delighted to have made it to the Final and given the accolade.
If you would like to enter the 2018 competition, information will be available on the Last Choir website very soon. In the meantime, you can also email Anita Shaw on firstname.lastname@example.org.