Oakham School’s Chamber Choir has reached the final of the BBC Songs of Praise School Choir of the Year competition after their semi-final broadcast to millions of viewers on BBC One.
After months of practice, the choir impressed both the judges and audience at the semi-final with their a cappella performance of “Amazing Grace”.
Three choirs, Tring Park School for Performing Arts, St George’s College, Weybridge, and Oakham, were selected for a coveted place in the final, which will be aired to millions of BBC viewers on Sunday 24 April.
“I’m so incredibly proud of the choir – they performed beautifully, under incredible pressure,” says Director of Music, Peter Davis. “I was confident that they would rise to the challenge of singing unaccompanied, and they certainly held their nerve – despite the sheer number of cameras around them, along with the expectant crowd, not to mention the judges’ intense scrutiny!”
The celebrity judges were incredibly impressed by the quality of all the performances, with presenter Aled Jones saying it was fantastic showcase of choral talent.
The last time the School entered the competition, in 2012, they reached the semi-final. “To have reached the semi-final a few years ago and now the final, of what is probably one of the most fiercely competitive and prestigious school choral competitions – having only entered it twice – really is quite something,” continues Peter.
Back in February, the choir was one of seven schools chosen to participate in the Barnardo’s National Choral Competition, another competition renowned for its extremely high standards. During the competition, the Chairman of the Judges commented that “the Chamber Choir really does have the ability to really ‘wow’ the judges in the Songs of Praise competition – in fact to ‘wow’ anyone.”