What a busy few months the choir have had! Since January it seems to have been non stop. Firstly, they placed first in the Manx Folk Awards for the second year in a row (and the 5th time in 6 years). This was in the songs in English on a Manx theme. Then at the Guild, they won the junior choir class and the Gaelic choirs class. Many members of the choir were also part of the victorious action song group, who performed a fantastic version of the Rhythm of Life. As if this wasn't enough, on the morning of the action song class, they learned that they had gained the highest mark out of all the junior choir classes due to their win in the junior choir class. It was a fantastic year for them, as well as the action song group, the music making groups and all of the soloists. A year to remember.
Then it was all hands on deck in preparation for the choir trip to the Llangollen International Eisteddfod in Wales. We travelled over at the beginning of July in what turned out to be very warm weather. We had some interesting times on the way down to our accommodation in Bala, as the coach decided to break down on us! We waited at the side of the road for around an hour for a replacement and used the opportunity to have an impromptu choir rehearsal! All this, a late tea and the general excitement of being away with school meant that not much sleep was had that night!
Competition day dawned and there was a sense of excitement as we
travelled in the coach towards Llangollen. We arrived in plenty
of time and were warmly greeted by the festival committee. In the
morning, the choir performed their two songs in Manx in the
Children's Folk Song Choir class. This was against some
incredible choirs from all over the world and it soon became
apparent that our choir were by far the youngest choir in this
class. Undaunted and full of excitement and pride, they walked
onto stage to a huge round of applause. They performed their two
songs Ta'n Grine Veg Oarn and Irrey Ny Greiney beautifully. It
must be said at this point that the stage was absolutely huge!
The choir were completely unfazed by the experience and sang like
pros. They received a very commendable mark and placed 9th out of
11. After this, it was time to refuel before the afternoon class,
which was the junior choirs. This was a chance to perform against
some of the best school choirs in the UK. Every choir performed
John Rutter's The Lord Bless You and Keep You and also one other
song of their own choice. Our choir were drawn last in the class,
just after the junior choir of the Cor Glanaethwy choir group
(which is the choir that were in the final of Britain's Got
Talent!). Again, they performed fantastically and in particular,
their version of The Lord Bless You and Keep You gained lots of
praise. The judges, were very complimentary about our pianist,
Graham Kirkland. Graham and his wife accompanied the choir on our
trip and we are indebted to him for his support and dedication to
our choir. After the performance, some of the choir were
interviewed by Welsh tele S4C, which was then broadcast that
By this point, the weather had become very warm, so after a wander around the Eisteddfod field (and several purchases of squishies!), the choir travelled back to the accommodation, changed out of their performance clothes and had fun playing and relaxing in the sun, after tea. Unsurprisingly, it didn't take nearly as long for them to fall asleep! The next day was Tynwald Day. We travelled back up to Liverpool and had food at the Maritime Museum and then visited the British Music Experience museum in the Cunard Building by the docks. It was an absolutely fantastic exhibition of popular music from 1945 to the present day. There were all sorts of things in there, from the guitars of famous musicians, to famous outfits that the likes of David Bowie had worn. We even saw a drum kit that belonged to the rock group Queen. After this, it was finally time to get on the boat and go home. Thankfully, the journey was smooth and uneventful. As we came in to dock in Douglas, we went out on to the outside deck and performed the Manx National Anthem and Ellan Vannin which, on Tynwald Day, was a very fitting end to our fantastic trip. The choir behaved brilliantly and represented the island to the highest standard. We would like once again to thank all of our sponsors - Auxesia, Tower Insurance, the IOM Steam Packet, the Malcolm Scott Dickinson Trust, RL360, Culture Vannin and the IOM Arts Council. If you search on this site, you will find video links to our performances. http://llangollen.tv/choirs/?lang=en
To finish the school year, the choir performed at a charity night in aid of Manx Cancer Help. The night was a Bee Gees themed night and they performed You Win Again. This was the day before the last day of term!! Some members of the choir even came to sing with the Platform Theatre School choir at the fantastic Relay For Life event at the NSC over the summer. It was an honour and a pleasure to be involved in some way in this event. They have already had their first performance of the new school year 2018-19 as well! On Saturday night (8th Sept), they performed at the IOM Film Festival in a night of performances that was compered by the film critic Mark Kermode. Each act performed a song from a movie - the choir performed Pure Imagination from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and at the end, they performed This Is Me from the Greatest Showman. Our soloist was Jasmine, who is an ex choir member now studying A-level music. It was wonderful to have her back and also for the choir to see what they might aspire to in future years. She sung fantastically and we couldn't be prouder.
Next up, the choir are performing at the IOM Children's Centre Blue Tie Ball at the Villa a week on Friday. This will be the new choir pupils' first public performance! Some of the choir will also be performing at the Greatest Variety Show, which is being put on at the Gaiety Theatre, in aid of Hospice. They have been invited to perform The Prayer with Alexandra Slater, which they performed at the Collabro concert last year. Some of the year 6s will also be entering the Next Big Thing talent competition too.