Choir of the Year

Choir of the Year Finalists!

We did it! The White Rosettes are through to the final of the National Choir of the Year 2016. How very exciting! And what a day it was …

Most of the Rosettes travelled to Birmingham by coach, setting off at early o’clock morning to get to the Symphony Hall in good time. As ever, they were very well fed and entertained by our glamorous “Catering to the Elite” team, led by Janet and ‘trainee’ Bea, and ably assisted by Sally and Jackie. Much needed tea and home-made scones were available, along with sausage rolls and a variety of other delicious snacks …the mood was a little quiet but a-buzz with nervous and excited energy.

Then as always in these things there was a great deal of sit and wait as we prepared for the competition. The stage time was wonderful though as I hadn’t realised quite how stunning the sound in the Symphony Hall would be. It was a true pleasure to sing in venue with such magnificent acoustics.

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Gathering for stage time

We worked out way through The System; stage time, warm up room, dressing room, lunch, preen, sit and wait. At Choir of the Year the choirs usually all sit in the auditorium to listen when they’re not on stage and so we were lucky enough to see the children’s category. They were all very talented and it was really awesome to see kids getting involved in choirs at such a young age. I hope that they continue to shine brightly on stage as they get older. Who knows maybe some of them will be the great barbershoppers of the future?

We were second to last on stage and so had quite a long wait. We left the auditorium during the interval and logistics dictated that it would be easier if we, as a large choir, made our way onto stage from the back. A shame, in some ways, as it meant we missed out on seeing the two choirs scheduled ahead of us, and it would have been great to see everyone else putting on their best show.

Suddenly it was our turn … and then before I knew it – it was over! As ever, our ballad, You’ll Never Know was an emotional ride and I always love the power and excitement of Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho – and if I do say so, I thought we did really rather well! We got some wonderful feedback straight away from the judges and there was a flutter of excitement that we might just have done enough to get through. Alas, when the finalists were announced that little flutter was extinguished. Apparently there was only a half a mark between first and second place as well! Having had a wonderful day and being proud if disappointed that we hadn’t won our category we headed home to anxiously await the rest of the competition ending and the announcement of all of the finalists.

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Needless to say there was quite the flurry of emails, texts and Facebook messages amongst us Rosettes when we unexpectedly were announced as a wild card entry into the final! And so off to Cardiff we go on the 3rd December.

Our heartfelt congratulations go to all the category finalists: Musical Originals Training Choir, Rainbow Connection Singers, Cor Y Cwm and Voices of Hope and also our fellow wildcards John’s Boys.

I am so proud that from 160 choirs across the nation the White Rosettes have made it to the final 6 and will now get to represent LABBS and all of British barbershop in the Choir of the Year final. Wish us luck everybody! I hope we really do you proud.

In harmony,

Charlie B, Lead (October 2016)