31 children from Norman Primary School took part in a spectacular concert at London's O2 arena on Monday 5th March.
31 excited children and four slightly bewildered, but equally excited members of staff headed off to London yesterday morning to take part in the Young Voices 2011/12 concert at the O2 Arena.
After months of hard work under the direction of the fabulous Ms. Randell, the choir were ready to flex their vocal chords in front of a full house at one of London's premiere music venues.
After a two hour coach journey, the group arrived at the venue in time to eat their lunch in the awe inspiring surroundings of what was formally known as the Millennium Dome. It was then time to take to their seats, a feat in itself for some who were wary of heights, as the group were seated way up in the Gods with a fantastic view looking down the steep sloped seating onto the stage.
A three hour rehearsal was led by world renowned conductor David Lawrence, known for his work with some of the worlds best orchestras, as well as his regular slot conducting the BBC's Songs of Praise. David helped the 6000-strong choir to breathe life and energy into the fantastic set list.
The rehearsal was also an opportunity for the children to meet the stars with whom they were sharing the bill. Urban Strides, The Street Dance Specialists provided the dance moves for the show. It is little wonder that this group wowed both the choir and audience alike when you look at their credentials; As a crew they have performed alongside major international stars such as Dizzee Rascal, Sean Paul and X Factor Alexandra Burke.They were also the first crew in the world to open the Royal Variety Performance in the presence of Her Majesty The Queen. Also on the bill was Irish folk band The High Kings who got everybody up and dancing to their catchy tune Step it Out Mary, beat box sensation Randolph Matthews who had the audience asking, "Did he really do all of that with just his voice?" and surprise guest Beverley Knights. However, the performer who received the best response from the audience was eleven year old Connie Talbot, the Britain's Got Talent star who wowed the crowds with her beautiful version of Snow Patrol's 'Run'.
Rehearsals over and it was time to refuel again before performance time. As the choir returned to their seats they could see friends and family filing into the arena to enjoy the show. Beth from Madrid class said, 'By this time I was getting nervous in front of the crowd of people ... We sang 'Power In Me', it was mega! I loved every moment of it.'
The two hour show flew by, as the choir sang and danced their hearts out. Proud parents had spotted the group thanks to their glittering gold Norman banner and were able to wave at the Norman stars. It was noted by onlookers that the staff had some pretty groovy dance moves to rival those of the children!
Nothing can really describe the feeling of singing as part of a 6000-strong choir with a live band and accomplished singers and dancers, all in front of a packed O2 arena. For 31 children from the Norman School this became a reality and is something that they will treasure and remember for the rest of their live
Well done to all involved for working so hard at learning the songs and the dance moves. You represented the school impeccably and did us proud. A special thank you must also go to Ms Randell who worked tirelessly to make this opportunity happen for the children. She was still at it during the performance, geeing the choir up and singing at the top of her voice to encourage them along. I've heard that she has a very sore throat today!