Dozens of young singers had a chance to perform at a special concert in a historic cathedral.
The annual Cathedral Outreach Concert at Durham Cathedral featured children from eight of Sunderland’s primary schools, who sang alongside cathedral choristers. More than 240 youngsters took part.
The Mayor of Sunderland, Coun Bob Heron, joined the parents, friends and family of the youngsters and other guests for the performance yesterday.
Sunderland City Council has been working with Durham Cathedral since 2003 to organise the outreach programme.
The scheme is organised by Sunderland Music Education Hub, which receives funding from the Arts Council and supports music development in the city’s schools.
It is delivered in partnership with the cathedral’s director of music outreach, Mish Kelly, who works with children and teachers at the schools and helps them to develop their choral skills.
The final programme was the result of months of hard work and rehearsals at each school, and spanned a range of styles and genres – from JS Bach to folk songs, carols and even a vocal salsa.
Ms Kelly said: “All eight schools have worked with great enthusiasm and I am sure all the friends and relatives of the children who came to the concert were impressed and enchanted in equal measure by the high quality of the singing.”
Coun Pat Smith, Sunderland City Council’s portfolio holder for children’s services, added: “This annual musical event is a great occasion for our young people and their families, and a fantastic opportunity to sing in such beautiful and historic surroundings.
“Sunderland City Council values its close working relationship with Durham Cathedral and its choristers, which makes this possible through the outreach programme.
“This concert is the result of months of hard work by the children, their teachers and their schools.”
The schools that took part were Academy 360, Bexhill Academy, Broadway Junior, Hetton Lyons Primary, Hylton Castle Primary, Mill Hill Primary, Richard Avenue Primary and Seaburn Dene Primary.