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Terms & Conditions

These terms were amended on the 23rd October, 2019

Terms & Conditions

This Competition is organised by the BBC (“BBC”) and Avanti Media Limited (“Avanti”), together the “Organisers”.

Who May Enter

1. Choirs of all types, including but not limited to, community choirs, youth choirs, gospel choirs and school choirs. The 'Junior' Section is for singers aged 11 and under and the 'Senior' Section is for singers aged 11 to 18. (Teachers or adults aged 19 or over on September 1

2019 may not form part of the choir, though they can be the choir leader or director).

2. The age of each singer is taken to be as of 1st September 2019.

3. For the purpose of this competition, the maximum number of choir members is 40; we will not accept entries from choirs that exceed this number.

4. Choirs should not include any members in a prominent role (eg soloist or choir leader), who are closely related to a member of BBC staff, Avanti Media or Nine Lives Television staff or anyone connected to this competition. Proof of eligibility may be requested. All members of the choir must meet the eligibility requirements set out in the terms & conditions at all times.

5. Winning choirs from previous years will be eligible to re-enter the competition following a gap of three title-years. Semi-finalists and finalists will be eligible to re-enter the competition following a gap of one year from the broadcast of the previous competition. Any choir who made it through to the televised semifinals/final of the competition in 2019 are therefore ineligible to apply for this competition until May 2020.

How to Enter

6. Initial entry is by submission of a CD, MP3 or WAV recording that comprises a single performance as follows:

  • A Christian hymn or worship song (selected from any published hymnbook or online publication) orinspirational song based on the Christian faith. The entry must not be longer than 3 minutes.

7. If a choir chooses to commission an arrangement for their competition piece any cost incurred must be met by the choir or school, not the competition organisers.

8. An official Entry Form from the Songs of Praise website must be completed either online (uploading the Hymn/Song choice) or downloaded to print off and post in (see address below in section 10) or email in (see email address in section 10). These are the only methods of entry.

9. One adult over the age of 18 (e.g. Choir Leader/Director) must be nominated as the choir’s main contact. The personal details you provide will only ever be used by the BBC, Avanti Media and Nine Lives for the purposes of administering this competition and will not be shared with any other party. The entry CD/MP3 file must contain only the performance being submitted for this competition and performed by the choir members intending to go forward into the later stages of the competition.

The named contact will be responsible for obtaining all permissions necessary from the parents of the children participating (or the school if it is a school choir taking part) before entering.

10. If applying by post, CDs and completed entry forms must be sent to the following address: Songs of Praise (YCOTY), 114-116 Broadway, Salford. M50 2UW.

If applying via email,entry forms and Hymn/Song choice must be sent to the following email address:

Closing date for entries is Friday 29 November 2019. Entries received after this date will not be considered.

Progression to the televised semi-finals and final.

11. Three shortlisting judges, appointed by Songs of Praise will listen carefully to the quality and style of the singing as demonstrated by the performance submitted as the entry. They will select 5 choirs for the junior semi-final and 5 choirs for the senior semi-final, but will not be judging the technical quality of the recording, although it would be beneficial to read the Sound Recording Guidelines at the end of this document.

Once a choir has been notified that they have made it into the semi-finals they will be requested to send any musical arrangement of the submitted entry to the Songs of Praise production office. (Songs of Praise, 114-116 Broadway, MediaCity UK, Salford, M50 2UW.)

The judges will be selecting choirs throughout the competition using the following criteria:

  • Technical ability e.g. tuning, diction, voice quality, balance, ensemble, dynamics, overall sound
  • Musical Expression e.g. musicality, communication, phrasing, passion, energy, commitment and interpretation of the text

12. Those invited to appear in the televised semi-finals will be informed in December 2019. The competition semi-finals and final will be held in the early Spring of 2020, exact date (and venue) to be confirmed, and be filmed for broadcast on BBC Television in April and/or May 2020.

13. For the chosen semifinalists an additional hymn/ worship song /inspirational song choice (max 3 mins) is required for the televised competition. This needs to be submitted by email or post to Songs of Praise by the end of January 2020. Note that this additional hymn/inspirational song choice is not judged until the television recording takes place in Spring 2020, (exact date to be confirmed).

14. The competition semi-finals and final will be held in Spring of 2020, to be confirmed, and be filmed for broadcast on BBC Television in April and/or May 2020.

15. Immediately after the televised semi-finals the celebrity judges will select 3 junior and 3 senior choirs to go through to the competition final (recorded on the same day as the semi-final). The prize for winning the competition in each category is £1000 of music vouchers which can be exchanged for instruments only. There is also a trophy for the winners in each category.

16. Members of the choir will be expected to remain under the supervision of their adult chaperones during the television recordings.

17. Both hymns/songs chosen for performance in the semi- final and final of the competition must be agreed with the competition organisers. For those selected to take part, choirs should use minimal accompaniment (max 3 instruments). A piano will be available to use at the televised competition. We expect that choirs will provide their own musicians for the choir’s competition pieces. The producers reserve the right to ask the semi-finalists to make adjustments or change their competition entry – e.g. if other choirs are submitting the same hymn/song.

18. At the conclusion of the final, one choir from each section (Junior and Senior) will be selected as overall winner, the others being ‘runners-up’.

19. The title of "Songs of Praise Young Choir of the Year (Junior or Senior)" is held for one year only. Winning choirs will be eligible to re-enter the competition following a gap of three title-years. Semi-finalists and finalists will be eligible to re-enter the competition following a gap of one year from the broadcast of the previous competition. A choir may make only one entry per category to the competition this year. The title should not be used for any initiative, which could bring the BBC into disrepute or any commercial activity without the BBC’s prior approval.

20. The rules of this competition are compliant with the BBC’s current code of conduct, which is available at Entry for the competition implies acceptance of the present rules. The decision of the judges is final, without appeal and no subsequent correspondence on their decisions will be entered into. In case of any dispute concerning nominations, matters of eligibility or interpretation of these rules, the decision of the BBC shall be final.

Additional Information

21. Parental consent must be given for each child to take part in the Songs of Praise competition and the permission for each child to appear in the television recordings must be sought by the choir organisers, or the school - if the choir are entered by a school. The competition organisers are legally required to apply to the LEA for a license for each child under 16 years old to perform. An application has to be made to the LEA in which the child lives, not where the child goes to school. Choirs that make it through to the television recordings - will be asked to sign a standard BBC All Rights Contract. If for any reason you are unhappy to grant all rights, in all media, for free, and in perpetuity to your contribution towards the programmes, you should not enter the competition.

22. Entries must not infringe the rights of any other party. The competition organisers accepts no liability if entrants ignore these rules and entrants agree to fully indemnify the BBC against any claims by any third party arising from any breach of these rules.

23. Entrants must agree to take part in any post-competition publicity if required.

24. The BBC reserves the right to replace choirs whose entry breaches any of these Terms and Conditions or, if in its opinion, entries that do not reach the required standard.

25. The BBC reserves the right to cancel this competition or amend these terms and conditions at any stage, if deemed necessary in its opinion, and if circumstances arise outside its control.

26. The BBC, its sub-contractors, subsidiaries and/or agencies cannot accept any responsibility whatsoever for any technical failure or malfunction or any other problem with any server, Internet access, postal system or otherwise which may result in any entry being lost or not properly registered or recorded. Proof of sending is not proof of receipt.

27. These Terms and Conditions are governed by the laws of England and Wales.

For further information please see the Songs of Praise website.:

Summary - Songs of Praise Young Choir of the Year 2020

  • To enter the competition your choir will need to choose a hymn/worship song from any published hymn book or online publication or inspirational song choice inspired by or based on the Christian faith.
  • For the chosen semifinalists an additional hymn/ worship song/ inspirational song choice is required for the televised competition and needs to be submitted by email or post to Songs of Praise by the end of January 2020.
  • Choirs are reminded that they should provide piano or other instrumental backing (max 3 instruments including piano) for both choices unless a capella.
  • Choirs are advised to consider how their chosen song or hymn will come across on BBC television.

Privacy Notice

This privacy notice describes how Avanti Media and Nine Lives Media will process your personal information in relation to the Young Choir of the Year Competition 2020.The producers of Songs of Praise respect your right to privacy and collect data only in accordance with Data Protection legislation and regulations. We will collect your personal data only when there is a legitimate and legal basis for doing so. Below you can read how we hold your data, why we hold it and for how long.

Information about the Producers of Songs of Praise:

Avanti Media and Nine Lives Media produce popular award-winning factual and entertainment programmes and have been commissioned by the BBC to produce the much loved, returning series Songs of Praise.

What data do we hold?

We hold the following data for any choirs competing in our singing competitions:

Main Choir Contact Telephone numbers

Main Choir Contact Email addresses

Choir Rehearsal Room of main location address

Everyone who appears in the show, including our audience members, choir members, congregation participants, competitors, contributors and presenters, will be asked to sign a Release Form. We rely on our legitimate interests as a media organisation to engage audiences and contributors.

Where members of the public are present who do not have direct individual contact with the production teams, they will be made aware of filming notices and be given the opportunity to decline to be filmed.

How will we use your data?

We will use your data to communicate with you on matters relating to research, filming and the broadcast of the programmes.

We will use your data to fulfil our obligation to communicate matters relevant to the commissioning, production and promotion of the programme in which you will appear.

The BBC’s Interactive Technical Advice and Contracts Unit (ITACU) will be able to access the information submitted via the online platform for administrative purposes only.

In order for the BBC to audit the competition at the end of the process we supply them on request with the contact details of the winning choir (their main representative, not all the members of the choir) and the address where the choir rehearse. The information will be stored by the BBC for a period of 2 years for regulatory purposes.

We will delete any personal information we hold after a period of 12 months from receiving it.

Your Rights

We understand that looking after your data is important and we are committed to taking this responsibility seriously. If at any time you request us to alter or modify erase or access your data that is held in our system or object to our processing of your data, we will give proper consideration to your requests, though we delete all information after 12 months. If you would like to raise any issues relating to such data, please send a formal request to Avanti via our email address as given below. In compliance with Data Protection legislation and regulations, we will respond within one month. You also have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office -