I was fortunate enough to attend the final leg of Hollie Steel’s tour at Oswaldtwistle Civic Theatre yesterday evening, and I was treated to a spectacular performance by our favourite little star.
Hollie opened the show by singing three songs from her album: “I Could Have Danced All Night”, “When She Loved Me” and “O Mio Babbino Caro”. She was wearing the cute white and rose petal dress which appears on her album cover. It was amazing listening to Hollie’s voice, and the fact that this diminutive little 12 year old girl was singing live in front of a packed audience, and was doing so with such confidence, charisma and skill. And speaking of charisma, it would be appropriate here to mention Hollie’s brother, Josh, who MC’d the entire event with such fluency and charm that it belied the fact that he too is just 16 years old. Regular visitors to this site will know that Josh has been offered a place at the Italia Conti Stage School and will be starting there in September.
After Hollie’s opening songs, we were treated to some performances by the Basics Theatre School, which both Hollie and Josh attend. It must be easy for other talented children who attend this theatre group to be overlooked when two such talented siblings are present, but a special mention must be given to Nicole Talmer, who sang “Your Song” in the first half and “Over the Rainbow” in the second half, who is clearly a talented and accomplished singer in her own right. I must also mention Josh’s performance as Fagin, singing “You’ve Got To Pick a Pocket or Two” from Oliver. He sings, he dances, he acts, he presents, and I’m sure the teenage girls in the audience would have a plethora of further favourable adjectives to describe this talented young man.
Josh also sang two further songs in the first half – “She’s Out of My Life”, originally sung by Michael Jackson, and “Everything”, originally sung by Michael Bublé. The first half was finished off by Hollie singing three more songs from her album, “These Eyes of Mine”, the song that Jason and Hollie wrote together, “Come to My Garden” and “Ave Maria”.
After the interval, Hollie appeared in a teal blue dress, with a sparkly sequinned bodice and pleated skirt. She sang a further three songs from her album: “Edelweiss”, “Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again” and “The Music of the Night” with brother, Josh. There were further performances by Josh and Basics Theatre School, then Hollie and Josh sang another duet – “Together at Last” from Annie. I found Hollie’s performance again quite astonishing. She had switched from operatic to musical theatre in an instant, complete with an authentic American accent!
Hollie finished the show with three more performances of songs from her album – “Hushabye Mountain”, “God Help the Outcasts” and the finale, “Nessun Dorma”.
After Hollie’s performance I took the opportunity to speak with the Mayor of Hyndburn, Councillor Malcolm Pritchard, who is pictured with his wife, the Mayoress Mrs Irene Pritchard, and Hollie, in the photo top left. He told me that he had met Hollie when she was leading the recent Hyndburn recycling rally for Hyndburn Council, and said it was great that such a talented little girl lived in the area. He also told me that chart topper Diana Vickers of X Factor fame, is also from the Hyndburn Council area. Councillor Pritchard also added that he would like Hollie to appear and perform at further events within the region in the future.
I’d like to finish this review by saying a quick hello to some of Hollie’s biggest fans, some of whom had travelled all the way from America to see her perform. So hello to Mick, Robert, Jennifer, John, David, Sean, Margaret and Agata, it was lovely to meet you!