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Letter from the Director of Music and the Arts - 16th June 2016

It has been a full-on and totally amazing week in the Performing Arts building this week.

  • Horrible Histories
  • Horrible Histories
  • Horrible Histories
  • Horrible Histories
  • Horrible Histories
  • Horrible Histories
  • Juilliard
  • Juilliard
  • Juilliard

The final preparations for the Junior school’s Horrible Histories production left us so impressed with the pupils’ hard work and effort. The first performances yesterday, the matinee and evening show, were a tribute to that hard work and very well received by parents and siblings who attended. The Primary staff who have put these performances together have worked extremely hard in preparing the scripts and also working on the acting side. Amazing work by all concerned! With one more performance this evening, the pupils will no doubt be exhausted by the end of the week. I would also like to thank Mrs Passante, Mr Scrymgeour and Mr Trayte who have been working tirelessly with all of the organising and organisation of this production.

This week also saw us welcome to school Michael Shinn and his wife Jessica Chow Shinn to perform and work with some of our pupils. Michael is the head of keyboard studies and Jessica is a teaching fellow both at Juilliard. It was a fantastic day starting with a masterclass, taken by Michael, with pupils from Year 1-3. Both Michael and Jessica were impressed with the talents of these pupils who were ‘performing beyond their years’ and afterwards these pupils couldn’t stop talking about their experience all of the way back to the classroom; a truly memorable experience for all.

Next, Michael and Jessica led an interactive Piano recital performing with Year 7-9 for around 35 minutes. From the moment they told the audience to stand up and start stamping and clapping their hands to a ‘Waltz’ beat we knew we were in for a great show, and what a show we had! Both Michael and Jessica performed on the piano at the same time, playing some Brahms waltzes and then a piece composed by their personal friend at Juilliard. Afterwards, I was very pleased to see many hands in the air and we have an impromptu question-and-answer session.

In the afternoon Michael and Jessica worked with a Year 2 class showing a classroom demonstration of a keyboard lesson. Most of these Year 2 pupils have only been playing piano for a couple of months and it was incredible to see them using both hands by the end of the lesson. The pupils were again all buzzing with excitement as they left the building one exclaiming that they had ‘met a famous piano man’. This was such a wonderful way to finish our year with Juilliard and we are very much looking forward to next year’s visits.

Event Dates;

Horrible Histories - 16th June, 6pm

Phillip Bailey
Director of Music and The Arts

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