Success at ‘Mrs Sunderland’

Entries for the Mrs Sunderland competition from Rastrick High School
Entries for the Mrs Sunderland competition from Rastrick High School

YOUNG performers from the Brighouse area scooped an array of awards at the Mrs Sunderland Music Festival.

The prestigious competition includes sections for brass players, woodwind players, flautists, percussionists, pianists, string players and choirs who compete over the eight-day festival.

Each year the Mrs Sunderland competition, which takes place at Huddersfield Town Hall, attracts musicians and performers from across Yorkshire and the north west and judges from around the world.

It concluded with a Diamond Jubilee Concert marking the Queen’s accession, on Saturday.

Leaving the festival with seven awards was Rastrick teenager Lydia Wyatt. The 13-year-old achieved first in the class 12 piano solo, the class eight piano recital, the piano solo for school year 11 and under, class six piano solo for school year 11 and under and the class 23 woodwind/recorder solo for school year nine and under.

She also walked away with a second in the woodwind/recorder solo for school year 11 and under and third in the woodwind/recorder solo - open.

She said: “I wasn’t expecting to do so well let alone leave with seven awards. I was really pleased. My family were all really proud of me. I have entered the competition before and I still enjoy taking part.”

Izzy Weaver, of Brighouse, was awarded second prize in the woodwind/recorder solo for school year six and under.

There were successes, too, for Tom Ramsay, of Wyke, and Andrew Featherstone, from Clifton. Tom was awarded first in the young men’s solo for school year 13 and under and Andrew finished in second.

Tom also went on to finish second in the junior music theatre for school year ten and 11 and Rebecca Carr from Rastrick High School finished in third.

“I was hoping to do well but it was a tough section. I’m glad my hard work paid off.”

Members of Exit 25 Theatre School entered for the first time this year and picked up two awards.

Madeleine Coldwell, of Brighouse, came joint first in the Bible reading class for school years 11 and under and Georgia Mae Bloxham came first in the junior musical theatre for school year six and under, winning the Vocal Union Trophy.

Gaia Hinchliffe from Rastrick High School was awarded joint second in the junior music theatre for school years seven, eight and nine.

The 14-year-old entered the competition for the first time. “I just wanted the experience of singing. I have never done anything like this before so it was an experience and will help me in the future. It was a shock to come second and I will be entering again next year.”

Ann Kendall, from Brighouse, achieved third place in the class 108 bible reading in the open age category.

Rastrick High School was celebrating after scooping a trio of awards.

The Rastrick High School Junior Choir gained first in the class 89 young people’s choir for school year nine and under. Adjudicator Eileen Bentley said they gave a very polished and stylish performance.

“This was a very moving performance rooted in first class musicianship.”

Rastrick High School Senior Choir gained first in the class 90 young people’s choir for 19 years and under. The Rastrick High School Chamber Choir also gained third in the latter.

The festival ended with a special concert which included a combined choir from Rastrick High School.

Choir director Alison Pryce-Jones said: “It was a very exciting evening culminating in the massed choirs singing ‘Rule Britannia’ and ‘Jerusalem’. It was particularly thrilling for our young boys to sing alongside the award-winning Colne Valley Male Voice Choir.”