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Hereford Cathedral School’s renowned Cantabile Girls’ Choir have qualified for the World Choir Games following a successful performance at the recent Canta Al Mar competition in Calella, Spain.

Twenty-nine choirs from 16 countries attended the event, including Mexico, USA, Germany, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland, Romania, Netherlands, Norway, Puerto Rico, Greece, Indonesia, Estonia, Spain and Denmark, with Cantabile being the only choir to represent the UK.

Cantabile achieved an outstanding three Gold Awards at top level in all three of their categories. This included a win in one category and coming runner-up in another. 

Cantabile won Gold in the Youth Choir of Equal Voices category, performing, I Lift my Eyes, African Lullaby, Johnny Said No and Danza. In the Popular Choral Music category the girls placed second with their performance of The Rose/Hello, Send Me a Song and The Prayer. Cantabile placed fourth in the Folksong category singing Bunch of Thyme, Oh Dear, Carrickfergus and Dance to Your Daddy. This is a huge achievement for Cantabile, of which they should be extremely proud.

HCS Director of Music, Mr Barlow, also won in the Best Accompanist category. 

On the second day, Cantabile gave an evening pop concert in Calella’s Sala Mozart alongside two other choral groups, including the fantastically entertaining Dutch close-harmony quartet, KeyChord. 


During the trip, the young performers also got to visit Barcelona, to enjoy everything from the architectural majesty of La Sagrada Familia to the peace and calm of the Montjuïc hills and the beach. They also performed in a special lunchtime concert in Calella’s Esglesia de Santa Maria in Sant Nicolau.

Cantabile performer Amelia W said: “It was a great opportunity to sing as a member of Cantabile in Spain. By being the only British choir there, it made me feel proud to represent Hereford Cathedral School in the competition. Through watching numerous choirs from all over the world, it has allowed us as a group to connect with different nationalities through music.”

Grace M-G added: “It was such an amazing and unique experience to sing with so many different choirs from around the world, and I was very happy so see that all our hard work and dedication paid off with the help from our Musical Director, Mrs Williamson.”

Cantabile Musical Director, Mrs Williamson said: “Three top level gold awards is an amazing achievement for a school choir! This trip was a wonderful opportunity for the girls to experience choral music from around the world and have a history lesson as well.”

Mr Barlow said: “Congratulations to all the performers and their conductor, Mrs Jo Williamson, for competing so successfully on the international stage.”