Saturday, February 7, 2009

Tonbridge Has Talent!...

It's true you know. If last night's performances at Tonbridge School's Big School Hall was anything to go by, they have lots of it. Most of the senior schools from Tonbridge and Tonbridge Wells has gathered together for a almighty showing of talent. Talents ranging from magic, to stand up comedy, singing, dancing, mime, ventriloqy (if that's a word) drumming, guitaring, even spinning glowing balls and a diabloist; you name it it was there. Probably the most amusing performance of the evening, for me, was Emily Ffrench's 'Speaking French' accompanied by Ben Fergusson on Piano. Well what else could she do with a name like that?! It could have been bad, but Emily, from Tonbridge Girls Grammar, held it together so well that she would have graced any rag week souirie. Other notable performances were the madness of Tom Wheatley's iMime, the psycopathic drumming of Holly Mallet with the weirdly named act Sir Synthalot, especially weird cos I didn't notice any synths; Hamish Balinghall, performing 'Memories', an accoustic guitar solo, which he's written himself was easily the most accomplished performance, and he got a special mention later on (but no prize.) The boy will definitely go far, John Williams, make room cos a new protege is coming. I had been asked to be on the judging panel, which was a first for me which I really enjoyed. The spot light was, quite literally, on me when I was giving my opinion of the acts so I tried to be as honest and amusing as I could while keeping it mostly upbeat (well they are only teenagers afterall.) Some of the judges were being very technical and rather Simon Cowell-like in a few cases, but I think on the whole we were all pretty fair. Judging panels always bleet on about how difficult it was to come to a decision, and you just think "Oh come off it you're just being kind to the losers." But do you know what, it is really hard to reach an agreement, as I discovered last night, because each judge has their own opinion. We were scoring the acts as they went along, but those scores, rather bizzarely in my opinion, went out of the window in the final analysis. We did however reach a decision, as organiser Mike Morris, indicated that we had about two minutes to do so. So the winner was a brilliant young magician, from Judd School, called Edward Hilsum. He kept producing those hankies and then white doves, which he placed in a cage on their perches; thenn for his finale, amazingly, and not even in a puff of smoke, he made those birds disappear before our very eyes! He needs to polish his act a little, but he's young yet and he's going places. Second was Amy Squirrel, from Weald of Kent School, a folky singer/guitarist in the Alanis Morrisett type-vein. Really brilliant and my kinda music. And third was a cheeky young stand-up commedian called Tom Edkins who managed to make his curiously chosen subject of liquorish funny, now that in itself deserves a prize. Some of his jokes were a bit colourful for a mixed-age audience, and, for me, he could lose the swearing but he clearly had the audience with him and laughing and that takes a lot of bottle when you're standing up there on your own. I enjoyed the the whole evening and there are many acts I haven't metioned here who were fantastic. I'll leave you with the comment I made when judging the ventriloquist act, which kind of summed up the whole evening, and it's the nearest I ever get to being funny: I thought they were all gloody grilliant!...

2 comments:

petrolstationvillage said...

This looks really good. Shame it wasn't on Youtube.

tonbridgepeople said...

Great blog! I have put up a link to it on tonbridgepeople

Rachel (community publisher, tonbridgepeople.co.uk)