Saturday 1 October 2016

Irish school choir end their Britain's Got Talent journey at the semi-finals

Published 26/05/2016 | 21:00

Presentation choir Kilkenny on Britain's Got Talent
Presentation choir Kilkenny on Britain's Got Talent
Aoife Nolan and Ruth Ryan waving from the bus as they depart from the school. Picture Colm Mahady / Fennells
3rd year students Lauren Delaney, Ruth Ryan and Aoife Nolan as they head off to the UK. Picture Colm Mahady / Fennells

An Irish school choir who hit headlines for their Britain's Got Talent performance have failed to reach the show's final.

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But the Britain's Got Talent judges had only praise for the 62-strong choir of Presentation Secondary School, Kilkenny.

Millions of viewers tuned in to watch all-girls choirs sing 'Ave Maria' on the show's semi-final in Wembley Stadium.

"Awh gosh that literally brought a tear to my eye," judge Amanda Holden said after the performance.

"It's a silly thing to feel but I feel so proud of you all."

Simon Cowell had only praise for the girls; "You are honestly special, it was like you came from heaven, dropped down to earth, did this performance. What I love is the subtlety, at the same time you have all these different harmonies."

3rd year students Lauren Delaney, Ruth Ryan and Aoife Nolan as they head off to the UK.
Picture Colm Mahady / Fennells
3rd year students Lauren Delaney, Ruth Ryan and Aoife Nolan as they head off to the UK. Picture Colm Mahady / Fennells

Speaking to RTE Radio One's Ray D'Arcy Show earlier, choral director Veronica McCarron said the group were "very excited and thrilled" to make the semi-final.

"If they deliver a performance like [the audition], everyone will be totally inspired and everyone in Ireland will be moved," she said.

"We have an amazing team."

McCarron officially retired from the school a couple of years ago but still travels from her homestead in Donegal to teach the choir for two weeks each month.

"I came to the school 22 years ago, they wanted a choral programme. We now have 300 children from first year to sixth year," she continued.

The students have described the choir director's enthusiasm as 'infectious'.

The group did not apply for the competition, but were spotted on YouTube by the show's bosses.

Watch one of the group's previous performances here:

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