On song Romford youngster eyeing musical career

Amanda with her certificate

Amanda with her certificate - Credit: Archant

A teenage music student could be heading for a career in the West End after penning a number about the life of Fidel Castro for a national competition.

Amanda Ward, 17, of Dorset Avenue, Romford, came second in the X Factor style event in Southampton.

The music technology student, who studies at Havering Sixth Form College, arranged and performed the tango-flavoured Viva La Revolution at Turner Sims Concert Hall, complete with strings, accordions and percussion.

Students across the country were challenged to write a song for a new musical about the life of the revolutionary, who was Cuba’s president from 1976 to 2008.

Amanda admits she had to do her research on the song’s subject, but doing so has helped her stumble upon a possible career.


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“I wasn’t planning on doing this kind of thing, but I might now!” she said.

“I was excited when I found out because I like

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performing and the judges gave some really good feedback.

“They liked the style because no one else had done a tango.”

Amanda’s song was a comedy act between two characters and a live studio audience voted for their favourite offerings from the five finalists using clicker technology.

Amanda’s tutor, Chris Donnelly, said: “All the songs in the final were of a very high standard. Amanda did incredibly well to perform so confidently on such a big stage.

“Students in the class wrote songs during the summer after studying the life of Fidel Castro and the draft script of the new musical in lessons.”

There are still a few songs needed for the musical, so if you are a student and you would like to enter the competition yourself, visit fidelthemusical.org.

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