Schools triumph in Australian Choral Grand Prix

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Schools claimed first, second and third places in the inaugural Australian Choral Grand Prix that Sydney Eisteddfod and the Rotary Club of Sydney Cove presented at the Salvation Army Congress Hall on August 17 2013. Carrying a total prize purse of $25,000, the event was the most valuable choral contest of its type presented in Australia and was strongly contested by the six choirs that placed first or second in the Sydney Eisteddfod John Lamble Foundation Australian Choral Championship that took place in June 2013. 

According to adjudicators Ron Smart PSM, Lynne William OAM and Brett Weymark, the standard of competition was excellent, but at the end of the night, the superb PLC Sydney Chamber Choir (Presbyterian Ladies' College) from Croydon was named winner of the $10,000 first prize.  Conducted by Fiona Clouston and accompanied by Andrew Basile, along with a student string quartet, the choir gave an outstanding performance of four varied songs and finished marginally ahead of the Fort Street High School Chamber Choir. 

As second-place getters, The Fort Street choristers won $5,000 and also received another $1,000 prize for giving the Best Performance of a work by an Australian composer, after delighting a capacity crowd with their performance of a new work Captive by Daniel Brinsmead. Waitara Voices from Waitara Public School claimed the third prize of $3,000, along with the People's Choice Award worth $1,000.