On the evening of Wednesday 16th June, 9 outstanding finalists performed in the 6th Sir Bryn Terfel Song Prize. Each singer had prepared a Baroque Aria, and English Song and an own choice piece to wow the adjudicator, Mr Huw Williams, Director of Music at Bath Abbey.

Mr Williams commented on the extremely high standard of singing and was delighted with the varied repertoire. The talented musicians presented a variety of songs from Purcell, Gluck, Handel and Mozart via Schumann, Debussy, Wolf and Rebecca Clarke with a clear enjoyment of all the original languages. It was a festival of song and vocal delights, with Chapel resounding to beautiful phrasing and interpretations.

The 2021 first prize winner Elan can be very proud of a hat trick of wins in this competition, and Mr Williams commented on her 'poised, complete recital of 3 well-chosen songs delivered with musicianship'. The two Highly Commended performers were Megan and Izzy, and Mr Williams celebrated their nuanced treatment of Britten and Clarke. But it was clear to everyone in Chapel that every singer was a winner and a talent to watch. Belinda, Tessa, Lauren, Deborah, Robin and Flora sang with conviction, technical prowess and a clear love of music. The Sir Bryn Terfel Song Prize celebrating vocal excellence at St Mary’s Calne is doing precisely that and is going from strength to strength. Many thanks to Jemima Palfreyman as School Accompanist for her sensational role, ensuring that every singer had sensitivity and empathic support in their chosen pieces. A wonderful evening!

Mrs Bethan Dudley Fryar, Director of Vocal Studies