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01/05

Thank you for the Music

Morale has been boosted by an array of dazzling performances from our talented musicians, ahead of the spring term coming to an early close.

Since half term, our musicians have been eagerly preparing for our Spring Concerts. The first, the Wind Brass and Percussion concert, was magnificent: Upper Sixth Music Scholars – Astrid (drum kit), Rebecca (saxophone) and Orla (clarinet) – had their moment in the limelight, while the Symphonic Wind Band, Symphonic Brass, Junior Jazz Band, Concert Band, and Chamber Orchestra all contributed to an evening of wonderful music-making.

The following week was busy with the ABRSM exams, while our choirs made a clean sweep of their classes at the Mid Somerset Festival in Bath. Lower School Chamber choir were awarded first place and the Jubilee Salver with a performance so impressive, they were asked to feature in the festival’s promotional video.  Senior Chamber Choir were awarded first place and the Muriel Davies Salver in their female voices class for Under 19s; awarded the highest mark of 90, very rarely given, the adjudicator could think of no constructive feedback! Year 7 Choir competed against choirs of Year 8 and 9 pupils – once again, they won their section, placing second overall (by just one mark).  A fantastic final music outing of the term.

As the pandemic situation evolved, it became clear that numerous well-rehearsed performances, including the second Spring Concert, would have to be postponed – we look forward to sharing them with you at some point in the future.

Despite the disappointments, on the final day in school, Mr Beecroft spontaneously mobilised Big Band, who valiantly entertained all those still in school during morning registration, assembly time, and beyond. In true South Hampstead spirit, the music department’s Friday lunchtime scholars’ concert series carried on – a fitting finale to a tumultuous week. Lower Sixth Music Scholar, Nil, and Dr Collisson performed the first Movement of Brahms’s Clarinet Sonata in E flat Major to provide, for an appreciative audience, a moment of meditative repose amid the chaos, seeing out the term with a poignant but hopeful message, as the music-making moves online – for now.

 

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