Niamh Crowley, a 14-year-old from Snave, Bantry was named overall winner at the inaugural West Cork’s Got Talent competition held in Bantry last Saturday night.
The event, organised by The Westlodge Hotel in conjunction with The Southern Star, was a fundraiser for the Ray Murnane Rehab Fund and Bantry Development Association.
Saturday night was the grand final of the competition, having been preceded by two audition nights during which the eight finalists were selected.
Niamh, who sang and played the piano, delivered an outstanding version of Alicia Keys’ ‘New York’ which won over the judges.
She fought off stiff competition at the audition stage and at the final on Saturday, during which each act was required to perform twice in front of the judges and the large audience of family, friends, and those just looking for a great night’s entertainment.
In fact, the judges and organisers were so impressed with the standard of talent at the final that they spontaneously elected to put forward a prize for third place on the night, which went to singer/guitarist Fiachra O’Mahony from Ballydehob who performed an incredibly moving version of Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’.
Second prize was awarded to the comedy duo of James Murphy and Conor O’Mahony representing Bantry Macra na Feirme. The lads were hilarious, had the room in stitches and also very kindly donated their prize money (€150) back to the Ray Murnane Rehab fund.
MC for the night was Gearoid O’Leary and as though the entertainment provided by the finalists wasn’t enough, those in attendance were also treated to music by Chris McDonald during the interval.
Niamh’s prize consists of €500 cash, plus a special video recording of her performing, which will be broadcast to West Cork and beyond via The Southern Star’s website and social media. To coincide with the release of her video, The Southern Star will publish a special interview with Niamh.
Second prize was €150, third prize was €50 and they will also be be videoed by The Southern Star and broadcast to the paper’s large social media and web audience. Watch this space for updates!