#JewsGotTalent: Who’s got the J-Factor?
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#JewsGotTalent: Who’s got the J-Factor?

Thirteen finalists are gearing up to wow the judges when they perform at the finals of the community's search for talent on Sunday, 7 October.

Some of this year's 13 shortlisted finalists
Some of this year's 13 shortlisted finalists

A  rock ’n’ roll band with a combined age of 450 years, a singing postman and a stand-up comedian who claims to have “the ear of God and the nose of his uncle” are all in the running to win this year’s Jews Got Talent, organised by the Hebrew Order of David, a Jewish fraternity in London, to raise money for Jewish Care.

Thirteen finalists, listed below, are gearing up to wow the judges when they perform at the finals on Sunday, 7 October.

This year’s panel includes impressionist Francine Lewis, who reached the semi-finals of Britain’s Got Talent, comedian Steve Furst, broadcaster Russ Kane and Jewish News editor Richard Ferrer.

For tickets, visit Jewishcare.org/jewsgottalentemail bookings@jcare.org or call 020 8922 2305.

 

Now, on to the finalists…!

 

Singer-songwriter – Beatrice Lancet, 15, South Hampstead High School

Beatrice Lancet

Do you belong to a shul? South Hampstead.

What makes your act different from others? I’m a singer-songwriter. I try to create a powerful bond with my audience through the subjects I write about, as well as the music I play, which I’ve been told is very memorable.

How long have you been performing ? I’ve been song writing for about eight years and, over the past few years, I’ve been performing at open mics, which I love. I will be performing a charity gig for the PDSA animal charity on 1 September.

What motivated you to audition for JGT?  I heard about it through the paper and wanted to be part of it to support  Jewish Care.

Do you think you can win? It’s up to the judges. I’m really looking forward to performing because it is supporting an amazing cause, Jewish Care.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? My dream is to continue to perform and share my music. I have been working very hard to achieve a future in the music business, hopefully as a major success. But if one person hears one of my songs and relates to it, that’s my job done!

 

Stand-up comedian – Gary Davis, middle-aged

Profession? Sit-down office worker/stand-up comedian.

Gary Davis

Do you belong to a shul? I don’t belong to one, but I do have the ear of God… and the nose of my uncle.

What makes your act different from others? I’m very different from someone who plays the cello.

How long have you been performing? Four years.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? I heard there were sandwiches.

Do you think you can win? I’m not putting on clean pants for nothing!

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? To make people laugh. It has to happen sometime.

 

Classical singer, James Harvey, 20, student at Leeds Beckett University

James Harvey

Do you belong to a shul? Watford United Synagogue.

How long have you been performing? For 14 years, including four years’ vocal training at the Royal Academy of Music. Highlights of my time there include winning the senior singing prize, as well as playing the role of Tamino.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? I am always enthusiastic about taking part in musical events within the Jewish community.

Do you think you can win? Yes.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? My biggest dream would be to perform lead tenor in Puccini’s Tosca or play Valjean in Les Misérables.

 

Gymnasts, Jemima and Paige (Tumbling Twins), Jemima Clayden, 10, Sinai Jewish Primary School, and Paige Goldie, 12, Yavneh College

Jemima and Paige are the Tumbling Twins

Do you belong to a shul? Jemima belongs to Borehamwood and Elstree United and Paige to Edgware & Hendon Reform.

What makes your act different from others?
We are the only ones doing gymnastics and do cool tricks.

How long have you been performing for? Since the age of seven; we have performed with clubs in London and Scotland at gymnastics festivals.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? Our parents saw it in the newspaper.

Do you think you can win? Definitely!

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? We want to go to the Olympics and compete for Team GB.

 

Singer, Joel Brahams, 10, Akiva School

Joel Brahams

Do you belong to a shul? New North London Synagogue.

What makes your act different from others? I’m told I sing with an unusual amount of emotion for a boy my age.  I have been known to move adults to tears when they hear me sing.

How long have you been performing ? Since I was two.  I started singing ballads when I was three. I remember singing Rolling in the Deep by Adele.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? I thought it could boost my career in the Jewish community.

Do you think you can win? Yes, because there are not that many boys my age singing songs of my musical genre.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? Absolutely Hollywood!  I am aiming for the top.  I will know I have done that when my picture is on the walls of L’Artista in Golders Green!

 

Singer, Mitchell Lathbury, 29

Mitchell Lathbury

Profession: Postman

Do you belong to a shul? Southgate and District Reform Synagogue.

How long have you been performing? Since the age of three.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? A new challenge and my mum; a proud Jewish woman who I wanted to make proud.

Do you think you can win? Yes!

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? Hollywood! I want to be a full-time performer and I’m hoping this competition can help me do that.

 

Female pop folk group: Miriam’s Sister, Jess Gold, 48, singer-songwriter,
Jane Kelson, 48, singer-songwriter and fundraiser, Rosalyn Miller, 32, GP and singer-songwriter and Judith Harris, 27, violin teacher

Miriam’s Sister

Do you belong to a shul? Finchley Reform, Pinner United and Barnet synagogues.

What makes your act different from others? A unique combination of beautiful harmonies, funny, original songs and a playful approach to performing. We all sing and play instruments too!

How long have you been performing? The first Miriam’s Sister performance was Jess and Ros together at Limmud in the Woods in August 2016. We have all performed separately since we were children.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? We thought it would be great to support this fun event that gives people pleasure, but also supports the amazing work of Jewish Care.

Do you think you can win? We’d like to think we can, but we know it’s going to be really tough, because everyone is so talented. We want the best act to win, whoever that is.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? We want to write and perform songs that make people laugh, cry and touch the soul. Jess has already ditched the day job, the rest are on the way!

 

Magician, Nathan Earl, 23, semi-professional magician, street performer and
Marvin’s Magic demonstrator

Nathan Earl, 23

Do you belong to a shul? St John’s Wood Synagogue.

What makes your act different from others? Being a magician is different from other performing arts because the audience always wonders what you’re going to do and things that may seem impossible are actually possible in the hands of people like me. On top of that, my style combines classic and contemporary magic.

How long have you been performing? Seven years.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? I saw an ad  for it and thought I must enter!

Do you think you can win? I would like to think I am in with a good chance.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? To be a full-time working professional magician.

 

Primary school dance troupe: Nevatim, Ages seven to 11, from Alexandra Park School, Akiva Primary School and South Hampstead High School

Nevatim

What makes your act different from others? We all love dancing. Our act is Israeli folk dancing, which is different from contemporary dancing that people often like doing.

How long have you been performing? Since some of us were about four.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? Ella Ben-Ezra, 10, says:
“I feel like it’s special to be part of it, as a Jew and an Israeli. I feel I am part of a community and proud of it.”

Do you think you can win? Yes! As long as we all try our best and work as a team, we will succeed!

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? Eve Glass, aged eight, says: “I would love to continue Israeli dancing. I like watching the older children and adult groups dance and hope to be like them one day.”

 

Singer, Shelly Chitiyat, 10, Mathilda Marks Kennedy School

Shelly Chitiyat,

What makes your act different from others? I’m going to be singing Papa from the movie Yentl, which I sang for my grandpa’s memorial. I love this song as it’s a prayer to someone you really love who passes away.  Sadly we all have someone we have lost and missing and I think the audience can connect to this song like I did.

How long have you been performing? Since I started talking! I love singing, but have been performing since I started vocal lessons with my teacher, Viv Bellos. A few months ago
I performed in Israel in the Mann Auditorium and in Jerusalem in front of 3,000 people. I also dance in Kidanza with Hila Moussaioff and play the piano.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? I love singing, but most importantly it’s also for a good cause.  All the money raised will go to Jewish Care and will help people in need.

Do you think you can win? I will try.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent?  Hollywood.

 

Rock ’n’ Roll band, Simply Gray, We have a combined age of 450 years young, ranging from retired to IT and most places in between

Simply Gray

Do you belong to a shul? West London and Pinner synagogues.

What makes your act different from others? We are a classic rock and roll band and there are six of us.

How long have you been performing? Mostly from when we were 13.

What motivated you to audition? It looked like fun.

Do you think you can win? It doesn’t really matter!

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent?  Hollywood sounds good.

 

Singer, Sophie Delin, 24, nanny and actor

Sophie Delin,

What makes your act different from others? I have a real passion for musical theatre and the great old-school style of singing that people remember.

How long have you been performing? I have been singing since I was three.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? My mum really encouraged me to enter.

Do you think you can win? I will give it my best go at winning.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent?  My dream is to perform in musicals, so it could be either.

 

Singer, Yoni Shine, Age 11, JFS

Yoni Shine,

What makes your act different from others? Everyone is special. My particular talent lies in my musical ability.  People say I have a unique and angelic voice and that I sing from the soul.

How long have you been performing? I have been singing for three years.

What motivated you to audition for JGT? I love singing and performing and this year’s JGT sounded like a great opportunity for me to do just that!

Do you think you can win? I’m not so desperate to win. I just love singing and performing. Winning JGT would be an extra bonus and would hopefully bring me more opportunities in the future.

What’s the big dream? Hollywood or day job alongside your talent? I would love to reach people and inspire them with my music.

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