King’s Rochester is celebrating the outstanding success of two pupils in the final of BBC Radio 2 Young Choristers of the Year 2016, broadcast on Wednesday 26th October on Radio 2, with Edward Hyde being crowned this year’s winner.
Edward Hyde and Rupert Walker (pictured below) were two of only four finalists in the boys’ category, amongst hundreds of entrants in this national competition, after passing through two highly competitive judging rounds. To have two of the finalists from one choir was exceptional and this is the first year this has happened.
Edward is currently Deputy Head Chorister of Rochester Cathedral Choir and Rupert was Head Chorister last year. The choristers of Rochester Cathedral are educated at King’s Rochester Preparatory School, the oldest choir school in the world, and King’s is hugely proud of both boys.
At the final, held in Manchester Cathedral, Rupert impressed the judges and audience with his excellent singing of the hymn, ‘I the Lord of Sea and Sky’ and the solo anthem from Handel’s Messiah ‘Come Unto Him’, receiving highly complimentary remarks for his performance.
The star of the show though was Edward who sang ‘I Vow To Thee My Country’ and ‘Be Thou My Vision’ to the setting by world-renowned composer (and Chair of Judges) Bob Chilcott. Edward’s singing was outstanding and he showed himself to be the consummate professional in his responses to interview questions from the host, Diane-Louise Jordan. After he was announced as BBC Radio 2 Young Chorister of the Year 2016 he sang a duet with the winner of the girls’ competition in the company of special guest singers, The Priests.
An exciting year lies ahead for Edward, who is also a member of Junior Academy at the Royal Academy of Music and the National Children’s Orchestras as well as being a Music Scholar at King’s Rochester. He thanked his singing coach, Mr Michael Jamieson-Smith and the Director of Music at Rochester Cathedral, Mr Scott Farrell, in his acceptance speech and clearly has a very bright future ahead!
Rupert Walker (left) and Edward Hyde (right): BBC Radio 2 Young Choristers of the Year 2016 Finalists and Edward Hyde winner.