Music gets students in the mood for Christmas
Our Senior School musicians had a fantastically busy final few weeks of term, preparing for Christmas performances and services as well as attending some special events.
During one weekend in early December our junior boarders made some Christmas cards for neighbouring elderly residents, and delivered them accompanied by some beautiful carol singing.
Year 7 students enjoyed a Christingle service in the Chapel on Monday 4 December. Back in September, when the girls joined the Senior School, the cohort lit candles in their first Mass service to remember that they are never alone and there is always light around them. Now, as Christmas approaches, the girls lit candles again but in the form of Christingles, to celebrate the forthcoming Christmas celebrations. The group sang Away in a Manger, Silent Night and O’ Little Town of Bethlehem, and a few students and teachers read from the Bible. The service was full of symbolic resonance and some of the students prayed for those who will be less fortunate over the Christmas period.
On Tuesday 5 December our GCSE and A Level musicians attended the traditional service for schools at King’s College Chapel, to hear the world famous choir sing a range of traditional and modern carols, and the girls were all wonderfully inspired by the performance.
On Monday 11 December it was the turn of our own musicians to put on a superb Christmas concert at West Road Concert Hall. The concert featured solo performances from our joint winners of the Young Pianist of the Year competition Gerri S. (Year 8) and Annabelle B. (Year 11); haunting renditions of Hodie Christus Natus Est and The Snow by Allegro; uplifting performances by Cantore including an arrangement of I Need a Dollar; as well as a Jazzmataz version of Jingle Bells; a fast-paced Snowtime like the present! by Samba Band; and spectacular musicality from a number of our school orchestras and bands. Thank you to Mrs Emma Fisher and Mrs Sonia Gears for organising, conducting and performing at the concert and for their hard work throughout the year in supporting our girls in achieving excellence. As is tradition, the concert concluded with some audience-participation as the entire concert hall came together to sing The 12 Days of Christmas. To view the photographs from the concert, please click here.
The Autumn Term concludes each year with the Senior School carol service at OLEM Church, and it is a wonderful way to start the Christmas break. Firm favourites from Once in Royal David’s City to Silent Night and God rest you merry gentleman are sung by the congregation, interspersed with readings about the Christmas story, and singing from Cantore and Allegro including Deo Gracias and Hodie Christus natus est. You can watch a clip from the service above – Elgar’s The Snow, by Allegro, accompanied by students Henrietta M. and Sungmin S. on violin. If this doesn't get you in the mood for Christmas, we're not sure what will!