If it ain’t proudly broken, don’t fix it
“There’s nobody like you.”
The judges of the Over 18s Final of Taunton’s Got Talent struggled to find comparisons for the young duo, Palk and Woolley after they wowed the Mecca Bingo Hall. In the same Music Hall that once played host to The Beatles, Taunton witnessed the first steps on an exciting musical journey as Billy Woolley (19) and Brandon Palk (15) were crowned 2019 Winners of GoCreate’s competition.
Delivering their own composition, Proudly Broken, they had the audience spellbound from the opening notes from Palk’s guitar. You thought it was going to be a cover of Hallelujah but then in came Woolley’s big vocals. Was he going to blast his way through the whole number? No, he eased off and then took it back up for the chorus. There was angst, there was pain but there was hope.
Andrew Knutt, one of the judging panel, gave them “10 out of 10 for original song” before going on to proclaim, “You guys are ready for investment to take your music careers forward.” Palk’s composed demeanour with the guitar belied his tender years. He looked born to be on stage whilst Woolley was a prowling, pointing, showy frontman in the tradition of Jim Morrison or, as judge Trish Caller called it, “In the style of Michael Hutchence of INXS.”
There was some stiff competition too. Charlie Hamilton excelled in her theatrical rendition of Oklahoma’s “I’m just a girl who can’t say no” and Lianne Vessier sang soulfully with a huge voice. Magician Alex Finlayson had everyone wondering at his powers of mind-reading and had introduced an entertaining element of humour to his act since the auditions a week earlier whilst Alan Hitchcott took us on a journey through childhood screen characters and superbly performed the voices of Scooby Doo, Yoda and the Muppets amongst others.
Jack Humphries’ one-man band was something to behold. He performed his own song, Being Alone’s Much Better With You, and must have given the judges a tough decision to make. He would be sure to draw a crowd wherever he busked and is currently on a tour of venues in the South West including Exeter this Friday and The Plough in Taunton on Saturday.
In the end, however, the decision was to the deserving Palk and Woolley who received their cash prize of £500 from compere Davina Warden and their winner’s trophy from competition organisers Jenny Keogh and Liz Hutchin. All three of these ladies went above and beyond the call of duty to put this event on, a testament to how much they believe in giving an outlet to the rich and diverse talent in our County Town. In Palk and Woolley they had winners worthy of the title. Taunton has, indeed, got talent.
Richard Kitzinger was at Mecca Bingo for the Grand Final of Taunton’s Got Talent.
All photography copyright of Christian Silverton. Palk and Woolley also receive a professional photographic session with local lensman Christian Silverton.
Taunton’s Got Talent is part of Taunton Live, organised by Go Create.