The latest offering in our series of concerts for the Lent term 2022 was a Pupils’ Evening Recital. It was a long concert (just over two hours), but my goodness me, it was a good one. The sheer volume of talent on display reflected from all year groups was at times breathtaking and most reassuring as we continue to emerge from the challenges of the last two years. The concert commenced with a rousing display from the Junior Singers, our voices for the future which, under Mr Butterfield’s precise direction, are both healthy in numbers and able to demonstrate good potential.
What followed was a cascade of vocal and instrumental solos: Paddy C (Sh) was sensitive in the first of these, Grace P (U6) cultured, James B (Re) slinky (suitably), Theo M (Re) spirited, Olivia M (Hu) lyrical and in the first of two performances, Oli R (L6) was dramatic.
A change of mood was provided by Bella E (L6) with a very pure sound, whilst Will H (Hu) was persuasive, Lara R (Hu) delicate, Bella B (L6), in her first of two performances, sparkling (excellent top C#), Sam P (L6) polished and Freddie V (Re), expressive.
If there was a prize for the most improved performer in the concert in his second performance of the evening, this would go to Theo M, this time on violin, which was most commendable, followed by Bella B and Oli R joining forces in a beautiful Schubert duet.
The final performances of the evening were given by the accomplished Allegra H (L6), the sophisticated Camilla B (U6) and a wonderfully atmospheric contribution from Emily C (L6). To complete the marathon, Poppy M (L6) then dazzled in a virtuosic performance of the first movement of the Sibelius violin concerto, which was greeted with an appropriate standing ovation. Orchestral arrangements on piano are notoriously demanding and it would be invidious of me not to mention an extraordinary performance from Miss Toomer in this final work and indeed throughout the programme, not forgetting, of course, the other accompanist for the evening, Mr Butterfield. Both accompanists deserve special praise as do the instrumental teachers of our young musicians without whom this concert could not have been the terrific spectacle it proved to be.