Junior members of Innova gathered in the Ramada Hotel in Portrush last Thursday night to cheer on their teachers in the Britain’s Got Talent semi final.
Crowds of nervous little dancers, decked out in red tshirts with pictures of the Innova girls on the front didn’t take their eyes of the television screens as their friends and teachers peformed live.
The 15-strong dance group opened the live semi-final with their unique twist on classic Irish dance and were voted into the top three following a public vote.
There were screams and cheers as the girls completed their performance, and it was clear from the huge smiles on the little faces that they had indeed done us all proud with their three minute display.
Simon Cowell’s golden buzzer act Bars and Melody topped the vote, leaving Innova pitted against violin player Lettice Rowbotham for the judges’ decision.
While both Alesha Dixon and Amanda Holden voted for the Portstewart-based group to go forward in the competition, Simon and David Walliams backed Lettice and brought the decision back to the public.
Unfortunately the local girls missed out on a place in the final, but fingers are crossed that they may be given another chance as the wild card act.
After the show, the girls posted a few pictures on their facebook page and said: “WHAT A NIGHT!!! Cannot believe we made the top three in our BGT Semi final.
“ Thanks so so so much to everyone who has supported us throughout our journey, particularly everyone who voted (again and again) tonight. You are truly AMAZING - NI pulling together at its best.
“We our beyond proud and grateful to have represented our wee country.
“Lots more in store for Innova in the upcoming weeks and months! And who knows..... There’s always the wild card.”
Innova dancer Rachel Brown - who was still in the dark about the outcome of the wildcard choice - but was able to tell of the incredible experience the girls enjoyed since first auditioning for BGT in Belfast’s Waterfront Hall last year.
“When we went to the Belfast auditions we just wanted to showcase Innova to a Northern Ireland audience, we never thought we would get four yes votes from the judges and on to the live semi-finals.
“The hardest part was that everything from then on had to be done in secret. Our choreographers - Catherine Lamont, Kyra Archibald and Emma McKeary - came up with a new routine which lasted for just over a minute.
“From that we just rehearsed it and rehearsed it over and over.
“It was very difficult just practising such a short routine over and over but it was really the right thing to do as when it came to the live semi-final show, none of us had an ounce of nerves as we knew that we knew the routine so well.
“You could tell from our faces we were amazed to get to the final three and that’s all down to everyone in Northern Ireland who voted so much. We just want to say thank you so much for the support we received from everyone.”
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