Music: Bede's Prep Soloists Strike Up a Storm
The Soloists' Concert at the Prep School was a fantastic showcase of musical talent from across the age-groups, with performers from Year 4 through to Year 8.
With 60% of the Bede’s Prep School children now taking individual lessons, there is no shortage of soloists for an event like this one, and the variety of instruments and styles represented in the programme showed the vitality of Bede’s Music.
The concert began with a wonderful performance of Space Walk from the Jazz Band. Jazz is all about playing together, but it is also about listening to the individual soloists in the group and there was some great playing from Joe Marks and Elvis Abraham (trumpets) and from Jem Matthews (drum kit), as well as from Emily Elcock, Maddie Goodman, Alex Hawkins (clarinets) and from Millie Head (flute). The expertise of Mr Savage, leading from the keyboard, kept the Band on track, ably supported by Mr Greatorex on bass guitar.
The concert showcased a lot of our talented drummers, with performances from Jem Matthews, Sam Noton, Al Maclaurin, Luke Burdekin, Joseph Muschialli and Jamie Menzies. The attentive audience really enjoyed the range of songs and techniques demonstrated by these young performers and we could all hear the complex rhythms and co-ordinating patterns which need to be mastered when playing the drums.
Stringed instruments also featured on the programme with Aldin Hodzic performing Slavonic Dance with great sensitivity and technical control, and guitar solos from Joe Marks and Reuben Mace which showed us the harmonic range of this beautiful instrument.
The Junior Wind Band made its debut performance in this afternoon’s concert: Toby Burdekin, Olivia Driver, Al Maclaurin and Amelia Williams showed off their great ensemble playing in Gangster Prankster and we look forward to their solo performances in the next concert.
The sound of brass and woodwind instruments is becoming quite a feature of practice sessions in the Music Department and it was lovely to hear Sam Noton’s performance of Croonin’ Oon on the tenoroon – a mini-bassoon – and Elvis Abraham and Joe Marks on trumpet, both performing jazz pieces, with Joe’s How Insensitive (a famous Carlos Jobim jazz-standard) being accompanied by a staff band.
Singers were represented on the programme by Ava Thurston, making her debut with Edelweiss, Lily Reynolds singing Dona, Dona, Maddie Goodman performing Brahms’s gorgeous Die Nachtigall and Charlotte Jones singing She’s Like the Swallow. The impact these young singers made on the audience was palpable and they showed great poise and control in their performances.
No soloists’ concert would be complete without performances from some of our talented young pianists, represented this afternoon by Louie Venables playing Pony Race, Nia Hooton performing Beethoven’s Fűr Elise and Miles Mao bring the concert to a thrilling conclusion with his breathtaking performance of Solfeggietto.
I am so proud of all our wonderfully talented musicians and hugely grateful to the fantastic team of dedicated music teachers who work with the children to develop their musical potential. What a privilege it was to hear just some of those musicians play this afternoon and a big thank you to everyone who made the concert possible.