The Volunteer Diaries: Scottish Finals 2019!

Last week saw the tour setting up in Dundee’s Caird Hall for the Scottish Finals! It was a brilliant couple of days and featured the first EVER J Rock™ Scottish Final! The standard across both days was incredible and as always the Scots brought loads of energy and noise! Ambassadors and Volunteers Katy, Chelsea and Katie tell you all about it…

First up was the seniors Rock Challenge® final last Friday. This year there were 9 schools who had been lucky enough to get to the final, and they were all certainly full of the Rock Challenge® Spirit!
From the start of the day, as all the schools gathered outside the venue, they were all extremely excited, playing music from their speakers and dancing around the square getting hyped for day! The atmosphere they created was unbelievable and we knew this was going to continue all day.
As soon as the first school got onto stage to perform their rehearsal every school was supporting them. It was great to see that although they were competing, everybody still managed to appreciate how much hard work each school had put into their performance.
After 2 rehearsals the morning production meeting kicked off and we had at least 40 students come and join us on stage to take part in the crew dance which was amazing! We then went through the running order which filled the room with nerves and tension but also excitement once it was all over! The teachers all seemed happy with the running order results!
The rehearsals continued all day, and everybody was so impressed at the level of talent from every single school, we knew from the rehearsals how tight the competition was going to be! The continuous high level of support throughout the day was just incredible to see!
As volunteers we were responsible for ensuring the day went as well as it could and helping the RC crew out in any way possible. We were also lucky enough to get into the auditorium to watch the evening show and we were genuinely blown away; the talent was unbelievable, and every school should be extremely proud of themselves.
When it came down to the results time we had to relay the results to each team in their dressing rooms as we couldn’t seat them in the sold out auditorium. It was amazing for us to see the Spirit of Rock Challenge® from every school, they were all so happy for each other and it felt like the placing and awards didn’t phase them, they all appreciated the amazing day they had and they all expressed their happiness for the winners… Kinross High School who showed a beautiful retelling of the Titanic packed with all different dance styles and really clever ideas!
On behalf of all the volunteers and crew we would like to say congratulations to all the students, volunteers, supporters and of course the amazing teachers! This was our 3rd time volunteering at the Scottish Finals and will of course be returning next year!

Katy and Chelsea xx

As if the senior final wasn’t exciting enough we then had the first EVER Scottish J Rock™ Final on the Saturday! I was at the first ever Scottish Final back in 2012 so I was really pumped to be here again this year for another Rock Challenge® first! The J Rock™ Final featured 10 incredible primary schools from across Scotland who, like their elders the day before, were full of energy! There’s something about the Scottish that just makes us have the noisiest and most excitable events.
Like the girls explained above we had another busy day of rehearsals, supporting the other teams, rocking it out in Production Meetings (thanks to our pals who joined us onstage for the crew dance!) and then getting ready for the performances. I was lucky to spend some time with each school’s Co-Hosts and Student Representatives and I was so impressed by how mature and well spoken everyone was – on top of being amazing performers! A credit to each of your schools!
J Rock™ is still a pretty new thing in Scotland and some of the regional heats are only in their 2nd or 3rd year but you wouldn’t know it from looking at the performances. Some of the schools look like they could have kept up with the seniors the day before! I’m so glad that there is now a Final for these guys because they obviously have the talent to show!
The show was absolutely incredible, at such a high standard. I always find J Rock™ to be so special and pure because you can really see the kids loving every single second of what they’re doing without a care in the world. Hats off to the teams surrounding each one of those schools, you created gorgeous sets and costumes and enabled the children to perform at their absolute best.
Then came results time!! Every school did an incredible job but the school coming away as the first ever Scottish J Rock™ Champions was Fraserburgh South Park School with their Hocus Pocus inspired performance!
It was an absolutely amazing set of finals once again and I am so proud of the talent and creativity on show up here in Scotland! Can’t wait for next year!

Katie x

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