The competition’s been fierce, the talent has been incredible… and this weekend Sing, Bolton Sing enjoyed its grand finale.
From 10am on Saturday, Market Place was filled with back to back vocal talent as the finals of Bolton’s biggest talent show came to a head. With a £10,000 main prize up for grabs, it’s no wonder the pressure was on and emotions were running high…
The 29 finalists had been whittled down out of 300 original applicants, through 9 weeks of audition heats and a semi-final on 22nd April. Taking to the stage, one final time, each act had just 10 minutes to win over the panel of judges.
Each act was scored by each judge independently, with star quality, vocal talent and stage presence high on the scoring agenda.
The judging panel included Alex Gilston from Bolton FM, Charlie McHugh who has a degree in performing arts, Maxine Cherrie from Bolton Rock Choir and Cathy Savage from Market Place Shopping Centre. Each judge brought with them a unique perspective on their decision making, determined by their area of expertise – with Maxine and Charlie having particularly sharp ears for diction and tone and Alex and Cathy possessing a strong all round knowledge of popular music genres.
Each contestant had clearly put their all into their preparations, making the judges really work to reach their final decision.
Finally at 5.30pm 22 year old Zack Thornley was crowned the winner of the £10,000 prize pot, having wowed the judges with his renditions of You Raise Me Up and This is The Moment. While 25 year old Alex Eastwood went on to scoop £3,000 after singing Listen and I will Always Love You, and Barbershop group, The Cottontown Chorus, went on to bag £1,000 after surprising judges with ‘God Only Knows’ and a fantastic Meatloaf medley.
Winner Zack Thornley said: “I feel ecstatic. It’s unbelievable. I can’t really describe how I feel now. I desperately wanted to win but I never really believed that I would. I kept telling myself that it was always a long shot but I really wanted it. I am just so, so happy and I’m sure it will take quite a while to process this and I will probably be sitting at home thinking ‘what just happened. I’m hoping this is the start of something, not the end of something.”