The Full Score

Singers from North York­shire and Glouces­ter­shire en­joy suc­cess

BBC Music Magazine - - Contents -

BBC Ra­dio 2 Young Cho­ris­ters of the Year crowned

‘If at first you don’t suc­ceed…’ The old adage has proved glo­ri­ously true for Emilia Jaques. A los­ing fi­nal­ist in last year’s BBC Ra­dio 2 Young Cho­ris­ters of the Year com­pe­ti­tion, the 15-year-old so­prano from North York­shire re­turned this year to take the tro­phy, im­press­ing the judges with her per­for­mances of Stainer and ★an­del. Cas­sian Pich­ler-roca from Glouces­ter­shire tri­umphed in the boys’ com­pe­ti­tion.

A er opt­ing for slow-paced reper­toire last year, Jaques, a cho­ris­ter at Queen Mary’s School, Thirsk, took on the tricky twists and turns of ‘Blessed are all they that fear the Lord’ from ★an­del’s Sing Unto God. It was a well-ad­vised tac­tic, reck­oned Si­mon Lole, one of the judges in the fi­nal. In con­grat­u­lat­ing Jaques on her tech­nique in ne­go­ti­at­ing the aria’s semi-qua­ver runs, Lole said that she ‘re­ally brought it to life’, adding that ‘the sense of en­ergy and the sense of line and flow were very good.’

Pich­ler-roca, mean­while, im­pressed in John Dankworth’s Light of the World and the hymn ‘Christ Tri­umphant’. ‘You sang beau­ti­fully and with great un­der­stand­ing,’ ex­plained Lole a er his per­for­mance. ‘I liked the fact that you com­mu­ni­cated with the au­di­ence and your rap­port with the ac­com­pa­nist was ex­cel­lent too.’ Pich­ler­roca, a tre­ble in Tewkes­bury Abbey’s Schola Can­to­rum, is not the first mem­ber of that choir to en­joy suc­cess at the BBC Young Cho­ris­ters of the Year com­pe­ti­tion – Lau­rence Kilsby, who now plies his trade as an opera tenor, did like­wise in 2009.

The fi­nal took place, like last year, at BBC Phil­har­monic Stu­dios in Me­diac­i­tyuk, and was hosted by Blue Peter pre­sen­ter Radzi Chinyan­ganya. As well as Lole, who is the for­mer di­rec­tor of mu­sic at She eld and Sal­is­bury cathe­drals, the judges in­cluded com­poser Bob Chilcott (see p21) and Caro­line Red­man Lusher, the founder and di­rec­tor of the Rock Choir. Jaques’s and Pich­ler­roca’s achieve­ment will bring with it many op­por­tu­ni­ties to sing on BBC Ra­dio over the forth­com­ing months, and both have al­ready been into the stu­dio to record a disc to be cov­er­mounted on the May is­sue of BBC Mu­sic Mag­a­zine.

Sweet singing:Emilia Jaques, one of this year’s win­ners

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