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Bede Academy Choir performs at CBBC Live

CBBC Live (2)Young singers got to rub shoulders with the stars when their choir received an exclusive invitation to perform on a children’s national television roadshow.

The 42-strong Academy Choir from Bede Academy, Blyth, was the only school group to be invited to take part in the CBBC Live when it came to the North East.

They got to meet several CBBC presenters back stage including former pop star David Grant.

Aimed at children aged six-twelve, the event included live broadcasts from some of CBBC’s biggest stars and shows including Blue Peter, Newsround and Hacker T Dog.

Led by head of music Helen Kerr and pianist Bartholomew Dobson, the Bede choir was given just four weeks to prepare their repertoire and rehearse for the appearance.

They performed pieces by John Rutter and Andrew Lloyd Webber as well as a medley of North East folk songs.

Mrs Kerr said:

“Mr Dobson did a really clever job of intertwining several complex melodies from well known North East favourites like Bobby Shafto and Waters of Tyne.

“It was an amazing opportunity for the Bede Academy Choir and the students had a brilliant time. They were excited to meet the presenters they’ve seen on TV and it was great privilege to be invited to take part.”

The choir is the academy’s biggest choral group and comprises students from all secondary year groups and seven-year-old Erin Lynch from the primary academy.

Their invitation followed an appearance at Prom Praise at the Royal Albert Hall in London when, again, they were the only school choir to perform.

Drummer wins Young Musician contest

Young Musician of the Year winnerDRUMMER Jack Herron proved to be on the beat when he secured a coveted music title at a North East academy.

The 18-year-old at Bede Academy, Blyth, was voted Young Musician of the Year in an annual contest that showcases musical and vocal talent among academy students.

Jack performed Rush’s YYZ in front of a packed auditorium and a panel of five judges, taking the top honour at his third appearance in the competition.

“It was fantastic to win, particularly as I go on study leave next week, so this is my last week of normal school,” he said.

“My father is a drummer and I have reached Grade 8 with merit, but, really, I only do it for fun.”

Jack, who is influenced by Dream Theater (American spelling correct) drummer Mike Portnoy, hopes to study computer science at Durham University with a view to a career as a software engineer.

Runner up in the keenly-fought contest was Oliver Cobb, who played Cry Machine on electric guitar. Third place went to singer Jay Routledge, who performed Linden Lea.

There were also dazzling performances by pianist Lewis Dunsmure, who played Fantasia in D; Kirsty Routledge, who performed Beaufort Allegro on a baritone euphonium; and soloist Imogen Forsythe, who sang Ave Maria.

The event was compered by would-be rappers, teachers Cosmo O’Reilly and Ian Harding.

Director of music Helen Kerr said:

“Performing in front of their peers and families requires courage and a lot of hard work and I think all the students were absolutely amazing.”