Dream Proms debut for Wigan singer Lucy

Lucy Farrimond at the Royal Albert Hall
Lucy Farrimond at the Royal Albert Hall

A music student from Wigan enjoyed a dream debut at the world’s most famous classical music festival on one of the country’s best-loved stages.

Lucy Farrimond, from Standish, performed at the First Night of the Proms at London’s iconic Royal Albert Hall (RAH) with the National Youth Choir of Great Britain.

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Remarkably it was the first time the 20-year-old mezzo-soprano had even been to the BBC Proms and she shared her delight that her first trip to the RAH involved being on stage.

Lucy, who studies at the Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) in Manchester, performed in The Planets by Holst and a new work by composer Anna Meredith.

She said: “It was a phenomenal and magical experience. I’ve grown up watching the Proms every year on TV without fail and it had been a dream to perform there but I didn’t think it would come so soon.

“We had said we should go down to watch but had never got round to it. It was just fantastic that my first time there was actually performing in it.

“We had rehearsed the week of the concert at a few different locations but when I first walked into the RAH I was awestruck by the scale of the place. It’s absolutely huge.

“It was a full house and I really enjoyed it. It all went by in a flash, though. You work so hard for something like this and then it’s over, but I’ve got wonderful memories and I would love to do it all again.

“It was quite emotional because years ago I would never have seen myself in this position. I’m very lucky.”

Thousands of classical music devotees packed the RAH for the concert and saw Lucy and the other female voices provide the ethereal ending of Holst’s piece Neptune.

The choir members then had to change outfits for Meredith’s work Five Telegrams,based on soldiers’ experiences in World War One and featuring spectacular light projections.

The choral movements are based on the stock phrases which were the only things those on the front line could send home and includes a moment where each individual singer has to recite their own date of birth.

Lucy also met conductor Sakari Oramo and Meredith and was particularly pleased to talk to a female composer at such a prestigious event as she has written a number of pieces herself.