Pupils ready for music finale

TALENTED pupils at St Ninian's high school are looking to make it two wins in a row in a nationwide music competition.

Each year, the Powerful Performance award gives an opportunity to one school orchestra to performance in Glasgow royal concert hall during Celtic Connections.

Last January, St Ninian's was the winner and once again its musicmakers have beaten off stiff competition to be one of the three acts shortlisted.

Music teacher Bethany Reid was delighted with the news. She said: "We are absolutely over the moon to be one of the three finalists — for the second year in a row.

"This is a great achievement for the school.

"The pupils have thoroughly enjoyed working as a team, learning, arranging and recording their set.

"The competition has really helped to reinforce their interest and love for traditional music.

"Fingers crossed we can win the competition and perform on stage at Celtic Connections again this year".

Organisers of the winter festival invited secondary school pupils from across Scotland to submit a short recording of traditional music using instruments, vocals, or a combination of the two with the prize of performing during the internationally-renowned event which runs from today until January 30.

Harp player Corrina Hewat who is co-founder of Scottish folk group The Unusual Suspects, sat on the judging panel to determine the shortlist.

She said: "We received a lot of fantastic entries, and it was a

big challenge for the panel to narrow these down to three finalists.

"Although St Ninian's won the competition last year, we simply had to put them forward again for submitting such a stylish arrangement.

"The combination of voices and instruments that were used ensured the overall entry was fun, dynamic and harmonious".

The festival's artistic director Donald Shaw, added: "Once again St Ninian's high school submitted a very impressive entry.

"The wealth of musical talent in schools across Scotland is truly inspiring

"The panel will meet once again within the month to decide on the winner".