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Hitting the high notes – operatic teen shortlisted for BBC’s Young Chorister of the Year award

PUBLISHED: 20:55 22 October 2018

Brooke Elley, who is in the Norwich Cathedral Girls’ Choir, has made it through to the finals of the BBC Radio 2 Young Chorister of Year competition. Picture:  Paul Hurst

Brooke Elley, who is in the Norwich Cathedral Girls’ Choir, has made it through to the finals of the BBC Radio 2 Young Chorister of Year competition. Picture: Paul Hurst

copyright (c) paul hurst all rights reserved

Brooke Elley, 15, has stepped out from the familiar stalls of Norwich Cathedral for BBC Young Chorister of the Year

Blue Peter presenter Radzi Chinyanganya will host the competition. Picture: BBC.Blue Peter presenter Radzi Chinyanganya will host the competition. Picture: BBC.

A young Norwich chorister has been recognised for her operatic skills as she competes in the final of the BBC Young Chorister of the Year.

Brooke Elley, 15, has stepped out from the familiar stalls of Norwich Cathedral to record with BBC Radio 2.

The Norwich School student is one of eight young singers across the nation who are set to have their voice projected across the airwaves.

An equal number of boys and girls are competing for two spots to sing with the Philharmonic Orchestra and perform at prestigious events throughout 2019.

Brooke will sing The Lords My Shepherd from Andrew Lloyd Webbers Requiem. Picture by SIMON FINLAY.Brooke will sing The Lords My Shepherd from Andrew Lloyd Webbers Requiem. Picture by SIMON FINLAY.

Brooke has been fine-tuning her skills with the Norwich Cathedral girls’ choir since she was seven years old. As well as singing, Brooke plays the violin, saxophone and piano.

“When I was younger my parents played a lot of Queen, I remember hearing someone sing and thinking ‘I want to do that’,” she said.

Brooke’s song selection for the final, which will be held on October 30, is The Lord’s My Shepherd by Stuart Townend and Pie Jesu from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Requiem.

“I started singing when I was seven and one of the first songs I ever sung was Pie Jesu,” she said.

“I chose The Lord is My Shepherd because it is a complete contrast.”

The bright-eyed young singer dreams of a career on Broadway and performing in the Phantom of the Opera. Despite her natural operatic ability, she also dabbles in song writing and enjoys studying art and maths.

Brooke is “surprised and honoured” to have performed on the national radio station but is excited for the next steps in her career.

Norwich Cathedral’s master of music, Ashley Grote, said he was immensely proud of the young singer.

Mr Grote said: “She has a truly remarkable voice which deserves to be heard and it is a wonderful opportunity for her to be able to perform on a national platform.

“It continues to be a great privilege for me as the Cathedral master of music to work each day with boys and girls who are so talented and dedicated, and whose singing brings so much joy to the many people that hear them.”

The competition will be hosted by Blue Peter presenter Radzi Chinyanganya and will be broadcast on Tuesday, October 30.

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