Vocal competition hits the high notes against all odds

Neither covid nor flu, nor frost nor rain, could prevent more than 30 young singers from as far away as Twizel competing at the recent Green Island Junior Vocal competition.

"I have two words for the kids at this year’s competition: courageous and inspiring," committee chairman Peter Thomson said.

"It was pretty touch and go whether we’d even hold a competition.

"So many young people have been unwell and unable to get the one-on-one practice time with their teachers over the past couple of months."

Five more singers pulled out just before the competitions; even an accompanist got covid and had to cancel, sending several singers scrambling to find another pianist.

"But we got there in the end, and we had some truly wonderful performances."

Guest adjudicator Sarah-Jane Rennie, of Christchurch, judged more than 120 individual performances over 44 classes, ranging from musical theatre to sacred songs.

Among those singing for the first time in a competition was John McGlashan College pupil Peter Choi (10). He did not know what to expect and was very nervous before he went on.

"I was quite anxious, and I kind of forgot my words," he said.

His relief at finishing his first song was evident, as was his enthusiasm to continue.

"I’ve really enjoyed it and I am going to come back next year ..."

AWARDS

Scholarship Recital 14 and under 16 years: Amelia Hollows

Scholarship Recital 16 and under 18 years: Teddy Finney Waters

Best Unbroken Voice: Peter Choi

Most Entertaining in Character: Joseph Kelly

Most Promising Singer: Teddy Finney Waters

Most Improved Singer: Ava Schaumann

60th Anniversary Cup (Encouragement Award, Under 12 Years) Haylee McDonald

70th Anniversary Cup (12 Years and Over) Eva Rose Grace

Most Promising Stage Presence): Sam Kelly

DUNEDIN ENTERTAINERS’ AND ORPHANS’ CLUB SCHOLARSHIPS:

10 and under 12 years ($100) — Jamie Hannagan

12 and under 14 years ($100) — Carys Williams

14 and under 16 years ($100) — Ripeka Potiki

By Jill Rutherford

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