A performing arts student has won this year’s Bury’s Got Talent competition and the £1,000 prize has boosted his fund-raising to pay course fees at a top drama school.
Tom Barber, of Thorpe Morieux, wowed the judges with his loop cover of Marvin Gaye’s Let’s Get It On and beat off tough competition from 13 other acts during the final at the Theatre Royal on Sunday.
The 18-year-old, who attends Conservatoire EAST at West Suffolk College in Bury, will use the cash prize towards his musical theatre degree at the prestigious Arts Educational Schools, London, which he starts in September.
Tom said: “I literally was not expecting to win at all. The standard was very high across the board.
“The money is a massive help with course fees because it’s £14,620 a year and I get £6,000 from the Government but the rest I have to fund myself so £1,000 is pretty vital.”
He is now fund-raising and to encourage sponsors, Tom is offering to act as a sing-a-gram, perform at a summer function and give a free pair of tickets to all his future shows.
Tom started playing guitar aged eight and branched into musical theatre. He has appeared in numerous stage productions in Bury St Edmunds with companies such as The Voice Squad and the Theatre Royal Youth Group 16 to 21.
Most recently at Conservatoire EAST he has played the lead in shows such as Bonnie and Clyde and Bent.
He was in the top three of Bury’s Got Talent with singer songwriter Gabby Rivers and Platinum Dance Academy,
The contest is run by the Theatre Royal Supporters Group, which hopes to have raised about £5,000 for the venue from the event.
Jacqui Laidler, event organiser, said: “The judges felt that Tom built on his performance from the heats, adding more skills with his already outstanding singing talents by playing the guitar combined with looped pedal.”
To support Tom, visit hubbub.org/p/make-tom-barber-less-miserables