Young stars of the stage in Doncaster took part in art festival put on hold by Covid for two years

Hundreds of young people have taken part in a prestigious arts festival that twice fell victim to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Thursday, 24th March 2022, 1:24 pm

The Don Valley Festival had an unbroken history going back more than a century, until it was cancelled with just a week's notice in March 2020.

The festival was also missing in 2021, but returned this year to take place at the home Doncaster Rovers.

Festival President Dorothy Weaver said: "We were all a little nervous but the response from young people was incredible.

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Abbi Watkinson, outstanding soloist in the music section

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"We had scores of music, speech and drama classes stretching over two days and witnessed some wonderful performances.”

The festival is one of the biggest speech and music festivals in the north of England and this year boasted more than 100 classes across different disciplines.

For two competitors, the festival was extra special.

Acted Duologue Under 10 winners Mattea Cooper and Ava Rothwell

Noah Simpson was named the most outstanding performer in the speech and drama section and Abbi Watkinson was named the most outstanding soloist in the music section.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.