This Summer term began with the Helen Wareham Recital Competition, which featured our most advanced soloists each giving a short recital programme. The diversity of repertoire on offer was notable, the standard of performance consistently high, and Oscar G.’s virtuosic violin recital was worthy of the winner’s laurels.
The following week was a showcase for all the major school ensembles, notably the String Orchestra, who performed Bach’s Concerto for Two Violins, with each of our advanced violinists (Charlie M., Anna C. and Oscar G.) performing a movement together with Mr Kevin Weaver. The first half began with an energetic rendition from the Samba Band, and also featured outstanding performances from the school orchestra under the baton of Dr Andrew Thomas, and the Brass Ensemble under the direction of Mr Dave Eaglestone. Nearly a hundred students appeared on stage, and our outstanding young string quartet and cello ensemble provided some high-quality chamber music during the interval. The Big Band have matured into an outstanding ensemble under the vigorous direction of Mr Dave Eaglestone, and they entertained magnificently in a rousing final set.
Our two junior year groups gave teatime concerts either side of Long Leave, and selected musical theatre performers contributed performances to the Dance Show. These latter events reach their culmination in the eagerly-awaited student highlight at the end of term, Cranleigh Live! This has been brought together by the indefatigable Mr George Royall (with assistance from his successor Mr Joel Robinson), and features music from several genres and from different decades, with some epic performances from rock bands and solo artists strutting their stuff!
Alongside the pupil performances, the professional concert series remains an important link to the community, and allows our pupils the chance to hear and see the best artists in the country at close quarters. Dr Andrew Thomas, accompanied by his wife Rachael, gave a superb flute and piano recital in May, showcasing the most diverse repertoire, and highlighting the riches available to those who have the curiosity to explore unusual repertoire.
This year we have put on sixty-six events in thirty-three teaching weeks: 24 concerts, eight competitions, fifteen Evensongs, four professional concerts, four Carol Services, two Remembrance services, two workshops, three outreach events, and four Open-Mic nights. All inspiring, exhilarating, comprehensive and exhausting, and proof that when it comes to music at Cranleigh, there truly is something for everyone. We look forward to welcoming you at all our events next year, once we have all re-charged our batteries!
Mr Richard Saxel