Reflections on the Global Orchestra Experience - by Sally, graduated from Regents Summer 2015
Participating in Nord Anglia’s Global Orchestra, in New York, was the greatest experience in my life, it was a once in a lifetime opportunity. When we arrived in New York, the entire atmosphere around me was fantastic. The weather was perfect and I got to meet a lot of students from Nord Anglia’s community: 82 students from 28 schools from four different continents, brought together to make 1 Global Orchestra. I was so proud to play in the Global Orchestra with talented students. This chance has led me to challenge myself further and work beyond my ability. We had several music teachers guiding and teaching us different musical sections. The concert preparation was very tough because we had to practice for long hours. In order to make us sound as a professional orchestra, we had sectional practices, instrument group practices and full orchestra practices. From this process we have learnt from each other and personally, I was able to improve my flute skills.
When we visited the Juilliard Music School, we got the chance to do dance and drama workshops as well as attending music lessons. I was very honoured to have attended the lesson lead by the staff from The Juilliard School, and it was amazing to see Mozart and Beethoven’s real manuscript collections in the library there.
The day after the concert, we had a tour around New York City. We visited lots of the famous sights such as Grand Central Station, Time Square, Rockefeller Centre, The Museum of Modern Art, Central Park and more. Also, we got to see the play called ‘Curious Incident’ on Broadway.
Before travelling to New York, I was bit concerned about working with new people and worried about the sound we were about to create. However, at the end, the concert was amazing and the sound we produced was fantastic. I have really enjoyed working collaboratively with other Nord Anglia students. It was a great opportunity and I had a lot of fun.
The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) Examinations - by Namika, Year 10
Towards the end of the last academic year, several students including myself from both the primary and secondary school sat an ABRSM exam for either the piano or violin. ABRSM (The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music) exams are graded examinations which include performing practised pieces, aural tests, sight reading and a test on musical skills such as scales and arpeggios.
I practised and worked very hard towards the exam, and it was definitely a challenge especially as I was nervous before entering the exam room. However, I think sitting the exam was a great experience for everyone who did; it gave me an idea of how much personal progress I had made, a guide on how to improve my musical skills, and an opportunity to perform, as well as motivation towards a goal and to practise my instrument.
Overall, the ABRSM exam in Regents was a success as every student who took it passed, and I aim to practise even more and get better results if I were to sit the examination again this year.
Performing with Kathryn Anderson - by Seobin, Year 8
I was asked to play the King’s Anthem on my violin at the NAE-Juilliard Music Curriculum Evening held at school on Wednesday 21st October. I was told the day before that it was to be my honour to play this alongside Kathryn Anderson, who is such a great musician. The moment I heard I had to play with Ms. Anderson I had mixed emotions of both excitement and distress. That night I practiced and practiced until I just couldn’t play anymore. After a very nervous night’s sleep it was the day.
For the whole day before the performance I was very worried that I might mess up or make a really nasty sound. Right before the performance I had butterflies in my stomach. Then it was time for me to play, right before going on the stage Mr. Crichton and Ms. Andrews told me not to be nervous but inevitably I was very nervous. When I was playing I was a tiny bit shaky but it somehow went through quite smoothly. After the performance my teachers and friends told me that I did a good job. This was when I felt a tiny bit proud.
This was such a great opportunity for my musical experience and my life.
On challenging myself to achieve a goal - by Justin, Year 10
I think I have made progress with playing the guitar well. I came to the school last year and started to learn how to play the bass guitar in the rock band after-school activity. I got better because of practicing regularly and now I’m able to play electric guitar as well. I’m very lucky because of the many opportunities in this school like summer concerts and battle of the bands in which I could take part in, helping me to get better and better. I would like to continue to put more effort into practicing electric guitar.
I will perform in the Christmas Concert and that is another challenging task for me.
In 20 years, I would like to be a very good guitar player but not as a full time job - still as a hobby. I will practice more and more to get better and better. Thanks to Miss Andrews and Mr. Crichton who helped me as great mentors. Also Tim, Aryut and Stephan in Year 11 who helped me to take part in the rock band and also other teachers and friends who helped me to be more confident with playing guitar.
Playing for Rememberance Day - by Josh in Year 10
We went to Kanchanaburi in Thailand where the Royal British Legion and war veterans came to remember the people who died during wars. It was also a way for them to tell their stories to other soldiers and to share their parent and grandparents experiences of war. During the service the priest prayed for those missing family members, then two members of the Thai Royal Army came to play 'The Last Post' and 'Reveille'.
At the second service we had a chance to perform 'The Last Post' and 'Reveille' ourselves in front of some important people, like the English and Irish Ambassadors. It was a great experience for me to go on this trip, especially seeing people travel from many far away places just to attend the service.