St Albans 12-year-old in final of national singing competition

Gracie May Weldon. Picture: Picasa

Gracie May Weldon. Picture: Picasa - Credit: Archant

A talented Harpenden youngster has reached the grand final of a singing competition judged by professionals.

Twelve-year-old Gracie May Weldon first auditioned for the national West End Calling competition last October, in hopes of winning a professional photoshoot, vocal lessons, a video session, theatre tickets and a place on a summer school - together worth £1,000.

She has made it through three rounds by performing to packed audiences at Leicester Square’s Tristan Bates Theatre and at Stockwell Playhouse in London.

Gracie sang Pulled from The Addams Family in the first theatre round and A Million Dreams from The Greatest Showman in the semi-final. The initial audition was in private.

The grand final will take place at Andrew Lloyd Webber’s newest theatre, The Other Palace, at the end of May, where she will sing This Is Me from The Greatest Showman before industry professionals, agents and casting directors.

It will be judged by Scott Paige from Made In Dagenham and The Addams Family; Daniel Buckley from The Book Of Mormon, Eugenius, and Loserville; and Emily Tierney from Wicked, The Wizard Of Oz and Ghost the Musical.

Gracie said: “I love being a part of this competition because you are being judged on your performance and not trying to fit a part.

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“I have played roles such as Annie and Mary Lennox in the West End and love entertaining people and making them smile.

“I am very excited for the final, it’s a great experience to gain feedback from professionals and also to build confidence.”

Only 12 contestants, all aged between eight and 21, were picked for the final in her age category.

Gracie is also currently taking part in a professional production called Why Is The Sky Blue? at Southwark Playhouse.

Her mum, Rachel Weldon, 45, said: “It’s really exciting, it’s what she loves doing, she never stops singing and dancing.

“I started her off with it in a small production to help her get over shyness, and she went with it, so it is lovely.”

Rachel said positive feedback from the judges during the competition process has been a confidence boost for Gracie.