Against tough competition from some of the country’s top performers, a Kings Priory School singer’s talent and hard work has resulted in them being selected to sing with the National Youth Choirs of Great Britain.

Year 11 pupil Helen Rees has won a sought-after spot in the choir after auditions took place all over the country.

Helen, from Whitley Bay, was one of a lucky few to be selected with thousands of youngsters auditioning in the hope of gaining a place.

The audition process has been daunting and rigorous consisting of an intensive one-day trial in front of a panel of expert judges.

Against thousands of the country’s top performers, Helen was challenged to demonstrate her understanding of music theory, perform two pieces to perfection and even prove her ability to pitch a note after only hearing it once.

The National Youth Choirs of Great Britain meet twice each year, during the spring and summer holidays, for residential courses which means its members can still sing with their regular choirs during the rest of the year.

The ensembles perform both independently and collaboratively with other NYCGB choirs at venues around the UK.

Recent highlights include appearances at Southbank Centre’s Chorus Festival 2015 in the Royal Festival Hall, the world premieres of Steve Goss’s Songs of the Solar System in Coventry Cathedral and Shlomo’s She Crossed My Lost Heart at Leeds Town Hall in 2013.

Performances in 2015 took place at Coventry, Truro and Lincoln Cathedrals, as well as contributions to NYCGB’s critically-acclaimed 2013 recording of choral music by Benjamin Britten.