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July 2019 Back to news

Music Department Update

Just before Half Term saw a visit from the renowned pianist Katya Apekisheva.  She gave a stunning, memorable performance.  The following day, she gave a small number of our more advanced pianists a masterclass.  What a terrific opportunity this was for William Johnston, Effie Bowley and Paige Broadhurst to receive some outstanding coaching.

We held our last Music and Munch of the year.  This is always a very popular event, as some of our leavers got a final chance to say (occasionally tearful) goodbye.  We had an especially special moment when Barnaby Gedney sang.  This was his first ever solo performance at school, and everyone cheered his inspired performance of a Meatloaf classic.

There was great excitement with the Musical Picnic on Sunday 16 June.  This was clearly one of the highlights of the season.  The rain did as requested and stayed away, allowing for all of the fun and games between the two halves of the concert.

This was, in effect, our end of term concert.  A huge number of pupils participated.  Yr 7 and 8 pupils joined us, and so we were able to have the Junior Choir and Jiminies, conducted by Miss Kennedy.  The Porter Sisters (Jemima and Rosie) performed a highly polished duet Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better.  Mr Thomson had his small choir perform Tallis’ If ye love me.  Mr Bowley Directed members of Chapel Choir in a number of pieces, including Haydn’s Insanae Et Vanae Curae.  The organists Ned Porter, Louis Horsman Carpenter and Jake Osiatynski all played.

Mrs Reece has worked tirelessly with the String Ensemble this year.  They were joined by the Percussion Ensemble, the Brass Ensemble and Porchestra (Parents Orchestra) for a romp through some enjoyable orchestral numbers, before we finished off with the whole audience singing along to I’m Singing in the rain – Karaoke style.

Particular thanks is due to Mrs Mortimer & Mrs Williams for their brilliant lemonade and popcorn stall, Mr Chapple, Mr Thomson and Byfords for their generous prize donations, Mrs Croft for her bell tent which housed the fortune tellers: Evey Jermy, Phoebe Harvey, Paige Broadhurst, and Fenella Henderson Chia.  They were incredibly accurate in predicting the highs and lows of everyone’s future lives, so it seems…. Tilly Mann made everyone guess the number of sweets in the jar.  It really was good fun.

We are particularly grateful to Mrs Reece, Miss Kennedy and Mr Bowley, who galvanised the brilliant parental and pupil body to make this event a reality.  Special thanks to FOGS for their support and for running a bar too.  We raised an INCREDIBLE £1,370.90 for future music tours!

Finally, we would like to wish all leaving musicians and leaving music staff the very best for life beyond Gresham’s.  Particular good byes go to Mr Hobday – violin, Miss Kennedy – Head of Singing, Mrs Reece – Assistant Director of Music, and Mr Bowley – Director of Music.  Have a wonderful summer, and see you in the Autumn!