Judges Dr Esther Waterhouse and Garry Perry are well placed to assess this year’s hopefuls in a joint Black Country Trust’s Got Talent contest – having appeared in front of audiences themselves.
The show will be a joint event between Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust’s Well Wishers charity and The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust (RWT) Charity. And it’s followed by a fun um Bongo a Bingo session.
The event is taking place on Friday 1 December at Rushall Labour Club and encourages staff from both organisations to step into the limelight and impress judges with their talents. Previous acts, when this was a Walsall event prior to greater collaboration between the Trusts, have included comedians, singers, dancers and magicians.
And Walsall Healthcare-based pair Garry, Associate Director – Patient Relations and Experience, and Esther, Consultant in Palliative Medicine, are relishing their chance to be in the hotseat again after treading the boards themselves.
Garry was Santa Claus at the Manor last year and is donning the white beard again at St Michael’s Church in Pelsall, while during his stint as Mayor of Walsall in 2011, he sang the Christmas carol O Holy Night at a gala show.
Esther regularly performs comedy improvisation at the 1,000 Trades pub in Birmingham City Centre, so both know what it takes to stand in front of a mic.
“It’s a great opportunity for staff to showcase their talents,” said Garry, who has been a judge three times before. “You meet staff who you don’t see on a daily basis and it brings teams and individuals together. There’s a competitive edge but it’s also a lot of light-hearted fun – and to have RWT involved will add to the mix.”
Head Judge Esther, who has been in the role for the last three years, added: “It takes a lot of courage to perform and as judges we try to recognise talent and the courage to have a go and have fun.
“I started off by watching it and I really enjoyed it, then I was asked to judge it. It starts Christmas off for me. My daughter, who’s now 14, comes along and I love it because you see people being themselves and having fun.
“There’s plenty of laughter and I feel really proud to be part of Trusts that do this. One of the joys of these charity events is that they bring people together so they feel part of something.
“The more you can laugh together, the better you can work together and it’s certainly a night to remember.”
Tickets, priced £12, are available by calling 01922 721172 ext. 6643/7279, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or pop into the Fundraising Hub in the Main Atrium at Walsall Manor Hospital, Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm. Acts wanting to take part should use the same contact details
There will also be food, a disco and bar till late. Doors will open at 7pm. Um Bongo a Bingo is for those aged 16 and over.