Friday, 19 August 2022

Singing schoolboy to perform at O2

A BOY from Shiplake has reached the final of a nationwide singing competition.

A BOY from Shiplake has reached the final of a nationwide singing competition.

Elliot Barrow, 13, will perform at the O2 in front of an audience of up to 2,000 people on Sunday.

He will be singing a ?mash up? of You And Me by Disclosure and his own track Keep It In My Pocket.

Elliott, who attends Gillotts School in Henley, will be representing South-West England and Wales in the final.

He said: ?I always wanted to write a song so I thought of a few lines and then I picked an easy subject like romance. It is about a girl and keeping a photograph of her.

?I never thought that I would get this far ? I always thought that other people would be better than me so this is quite cool.?

In a previous round, Eliot sang You Need Me by Ed Sheeran and changed the lyrics to be about him growing up in Henley.

He said: ?One line says ?started out singing in Henley, hope one day I?ll be a sell-out at Wembley? and also mentions the instruments that I play and a band I was once in which performed at the Kenton Theatre as part of the Henley Youth Festival.

?One of the judges said it was one of the best auditions, which was quite good.? Elliot, who plays the guitar, drums and keyboard, prepares for each performance by doing vocal exercises.

He lives with his father Martin, a human resources consultant, and mother Debbie, a managing director, and seven-year-old sister Jasmine, who attends Shiplake Primary School.

Mrs Barrow said: ?If you look at the YouTube clips you will see why he has got as far as he has. I would say his singing is like urban blues and jazz ? it is very current.

?He has a very good tone and he does his own interpretations of songs ? just what they do on X Factor.

?He can pretty much sing anything. He performed at the Waddesdon Manor Festival on Sunday in front of a crowd of 1,000 and he did that last year as well, so he?s not a stranger to performing to big crowds.?

Elliot?s first performance was on a cruise liner singing Hey Ya! by Outkast when he was four. Mrs Barrow recalled: ?He thought he would be singing in front of a few parents whereas it was actually 500 people.

?He is quite shy about the whole thing ? he is not one of those big-headed lads. He is quite humble.?

Elliot said: ?This is what I want to do as a job. If I get past this I would have to think about what I want to do next ? maybe I will take on a bigger competition.

?My friends have supported me throughout and the school wants me to sing in assembly but I still have the final to work up to.?

The competition winner will receive £5,000. The judging panel comprises former Radio 1 DJ Ras Kwame, now with Choice FM, Charlie Hedges, of Kiss FM, and award-winning songwriter and producer Mark Hill.

To support Elliot, text TEENSTAR 09 to 84222 by 2pm on Sunday.

Clips of his earlier performances are available on YouTube.

For more information, visit

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