PLEASE READ MY STORY....
My name is Billy Vale. I am 16 years old and live in Studley in Warwickshire. I love singing, acting and dancing and have performed in many concerts and shows over the past two to three years. I hope you will enjoy reading my story, keeping up to date with my news, looking at my show and performance pictures and seeing me in action on my clips page. I would like to tell you firstly about my wonderful brother and how because of him I became interested in singing which has shaped my life since he died .......
A TRIBUTE TO MY BROTHER GEORGE
My brother George was six years older than me and was diagnosed with a brain tumour when
he was 8 years old. I was just two at the time.
He was a fantastic footballer, a talented drummer and had been fascinated by radios, stereo systems, CD and record players from a very early age. At the age of 4 he set up a mini-disco in his bedroom consisting of a shoe-rack, two old speakers and a couple of flashing lights. At the age of 6, George did his first ‘disco’ for a friend’s birthday party and more similar invitations began to follow.
After being diagnosed with cancer aged 8, he underwent major brain surgery, radiotherapy and gruelling chemotherapy for the best part of a year. During this time he felt very poorly and took solace in his disco, set up at home, now in the spare room.
Many very kind friends, relatives, associates and complete strangers gave George ‘get-well’ presents, cards and gifts of money. He saved up all of the money and updated his disco system with better equipment, more lights and bigger speakers.
As soon as he had recovered some of his strength and stamina and was given the ‘all clear’, he began to do discos for his own and other local schools. He used his discos as a way to fund-raise for Birmingham Children’s Hospital and research into Brain Tumours in which his consultant Professor Andrew Peet was very involved. He also raised money for various other charities which had helped and supported him and his family during this traumatic time. During the next 5 years, George continued to do his discos for many schools, birthdays and other celebration events. He was also a really good drummer and would have been a great violinist if he had been able to carry on. Luckily we have found some videos of him drumming and playing the violin. Click below to see.
The cancer returned in his bones in 2008 when he was 11 years old but still he continued doing his discos.
In this time, he helped to raise over £20,000 for many charities by organising discos himself or being a guest DJ at events raising money for his chosen charities. After his cancer returned, George received the greatest pleasure in life from doing his discos even when he was feeling unwell. He said that sitting behind his decks was the only time he forgot he had cancer and felt ‘normal’.
Very sadly, despite a courageous battle, George passed away on 27th June 2011 aged 14.
At George's funeral....
I asked my Mum if I could sing The Lord's Prayer at George's funeral as we had been learning it at school. She was a bit worried whether I would be able to do it as we knew that hundreds of people were going to be there and she thought it would be too much for me. I did get up and sing as I felt it was something I could do to show how much he meant to me. Many people said how nicely I had sung. After the funeral my Mum and Dad organised singing lessons for me as I don't think they knew before this how much I loved it.
THIS WAS THE START OF MY 'NEW' LIFE.
OUT OF SOMETHING SO SAD CAME AN INTEREST THAT
HELPED ME AND MY FAMILY TRY TO SMILE AGAIN!
Every time I perform now I always look at the sound desk and think of George,
as I know that if he was alive today he would be with me at every concert,
show or performance making sure that the sound was correct.
This is what he wanted to be - a sound technician.
After George died we couldn't bare to get rid of his disco equipment. Even though I was only 8 at the time I was adamant that I would take it over. So, I have carried on raising money just like George did by doing discos in local schools, birthday parties and other events. I have raised thousands of pounds since 2011.