On Friday, March 16, we had four of our school choirs competing at Don Valley Festival. Over 200 children started arriving from 4.30 and after the initial surprise of finding there was no piano in the warm up room we managed to cram everyone into 2 adjoining classrooms.
With less than an hour before the 1st class, we somehow managed a full vocal warm up and run through for each of the choirs. It was quite funny listening to them all commenting on how good the other groups were:-)
5.50 and we were ready to go with Our Lady Of Sorrows Choir competing in the unison voices section. We were just about ready to go when one of the festival organisers asked me if I would accompany one of the other competing choirs because they hadn't brought an accompanist. So that was my break gone:-)
Our Lady Of Sorrows sang 'Pearls On A Chain' and 'I Believe I Can Fly' for their very festival appearance.
The adjudication was nervously awaited and lots of very complementary things were said about the choir, which was only founded last September.
Then the result...............................................
1st Place is awarded to Our Lady Of Sorrows.
Brilliant, so very pleased for all the children.
Then we were straight into the serious matter of having 3 of our own choirs competing in the same section, as well as accompanying another choir.
1st on were Crookesbroom Primary Academy Choir who were also making their 1st festival appearance. They sang 2 really contrasting pieces Geronimo and Born To Be Somebody. For a newly formed choir this was a very complex programme and they have worked so hard to pull it together.
2nd on were Woodfield Primary who won the festival in 2017. Really difficult programme delivered by Woodfield singing On Top Of The World and Love Can Build A Bridge with some sections in 4 parts.
Last but not least of our choirs were Richmond Hill Primary Academy who are no strangers to the competition. The two pieces performed were Carry You Home and Symphony. This second piece had a different difficulty, lots of high notes sung in unison very quietly, which was beautifully delivered.
An anxious wait followed for the choirs whilst watching the other choirs in the section. Then it was results time................
For weeks Debbie and I have been discussing how well the choirs have been singing and really couldn't decide who we thought would come out on top. Often that comes from who had the best run on the day, but all the choirs delivered a 'clear run'.
Again, lots of lovely comments about control, dynamics, commitment. All the words that we're always looking for.
3rd Place - Woodfield
2nd Place - Crookesbroom
1st Place - Richmond Hill
We were thrilled to have managed a clean sweep in the choral sections. Brilliant work from all the children and we couldn't do it without the superb help we get from the Schools management and staff.
So, a brilliant evening, with one slight issue. It was now 7.30 and the Rainbow Connection Singers rehearsal was due to start at 7.00!! Oops.
Here's a great picture, stolen by me, of the RHPA staff celebrating.