Glee Club win for Redbridge stage school

Glee Club winners Finch Stage School with judges Brenda Edward, John Partridge and Graham Norton

Glee Club winners Finch Stage School with judges Brenda Edward, John Partridge and Graham Norton - Credit: Archant

Gleeful members of Redbridge based Finch Stage School are celebrating their recent win at the Jack Petchey Foundation Glee Club Challenge.

The talented team beat off competition from 10 teams across London and Essex to be crowned the 2013 champions at the Indigo 02 on Sunday November 24.

As well as the trophy, the team also claimed the top prize of £2,500.

Finch Stage School Glee Club consists of 14 girls aged 12 to 18. They performed Ave Maria in the first half and finished with a salute to the history of song which covered 34 songs in four minutes.

Finch Stage School is based at Redbridge Sports Centre on Forest Road and is celebrating 80 years of performing since it was founded by Betty Finch.

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Betty’s daughter Linda said: “We entered this year because the timing was good for us but I never thought we would win. I am thrilled and that was the best I have seen them perform. I wished my Mum was still alive to see them.

“This is such a great bunch of girls and even those who didn’t make the final 14 came to along to support with friends and family. This is a stand out in my career of 40 years and for the Stage School – it’s a great accolade.”

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Judge Graham Norton said: “They were brilliant. The combination of excellence and talent touched us and all the groups made a connection. I love this event, it really moved and inspired and they were lots of worthy winners.”

Former students at Finch Stage School include Michelle Dockery, best known for her role as Lady Mary Crawley in the ITV drama series Downton Abbey.

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