Music rang from the Main Hall on 22nd October this year, as our students and staff delivered a stunning Autumn Concert, dedicated to celebrating ‘the joy of performance’ to a packed hall.
This showcase concert featured performances from all the school’s major ensembles, plus solos from talented GCSE and A Level students. It was an opportunity to show off the school’s extensive musical talent and to experience the performance of a rich and varied programme, all prepared to an incredibly high standard.
The concert began with our 50-strong orchestra performing the first movement of Mozart’s ‘Jupiter Symphony’, a performance requiring great energy and spirit; the students had worked incredibly hard to prepare this piece and this was evident from the passion and vigour with which it was delivered; a truly impressive opening.
Next up was our choir – comprising of pupils and staff (a real cross section of the school community) – entertained us with a fantastic rendition of John Rutter’s ‘The Heavenly Aeroplane’ and the ‘Gloria’ from Mozart’s Twelfth Mass, accompanied by Mr Boodle on the organ, and Robert Day and Henry Ip on ritornello violin. This was a wonderful blend of detailed and expressive performances, delivered with a tangible sense of enjoyment.
To follow came the ensembles. The brass group, coached by sixth former, David Crowe, performed his arrangements of ‘Mr Blue Sky’ and ‘The Simpsons’, showing a fantastic clarity of tone and tight ensemble playing. Our newly-formed big band, in preparation for their performance at the National Concert Band Festival in November, gave confident performances of ‘Rock This Town’ and ‘Chattanooga Choo Choo’, showing great improvisation skills and high potential. The percussion group, also led by David Crowe and fellow sixth former, Olivia Franghiadi, performed a delightful arrangement of ‘Animal Magic’. The group comprised pupils from years 7-9 on a range of xylophones, djembes and timpani!
Other highlights of the evening included the Chamber Choir’s unaccompanied madrigal ‘Come Serrah Jacko’ and a debut performance from the sixth form girls’ choir, performing a beautifully expressive ‘I dreamed a dream’ from Les Miserables. A range of talented soloists performing variously on bassoon, violin, piano and voice completed a very ambitious and musically diverse programme.
Feedback from parents included “What amazing musical talent!”, “Outstanding!” and “Delightful.” In conclusion, this was an incredibly successful evening of which we are very proud. We extend a sincere thanks to everyone involved for working so hard to prepare such a wonderful programme in a short space of time.