On Friday, Year 7 took part in a full day of singing workshops with Dominic Peckham, Head of Singing. Everyone was hugely enthusiastic and had a great time singing both solo and group parts. The day was part of Enrichment Week and culminated in a full performance to staff and other pupils in the School.
On Saturday 14 June the Royal Hospital School will be hosting ‘There Is Sweet Music’ – a celebration of John Rutter. It will be performed in the School Chapel by the Holbrook Choral Society and Orchestra, alongside some distinguished soloists. John Rutter is the Patron of Music at the Royal Hospital School and this concert will celebrate his music and that of other great English composers from the 19th and 20th centuries.
All tickets are available from the Ipswich Regent Box Office on 01473 433100 or via their website: www.ipswichregent.com.
Under 18: Free
On Sunday 8 June Peter Crompton will be returning to the Royal Hospital School to perform in the final Organ Recital of the current series.
Peter, Organist Emeritus and former Director of Music at RHS, worked at the School for almost 40 years before retiring last summer. No one knows the keys of the Grand Organ better, making this a concert one not to be missed! You can expect dazzling displays of organ management during the programme of popular organ greats.
The recital will begin at 7.30pm in the School Chapel. Admission is free (with a retiring collection) so no need to book. For more information please contact the Music School on 01473 326222 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
It’s a hundred years this year since the march ‘Colonel Bogey’ was composed by Kenneth J Alford and 350 years since the first Royal Marines regiment was formed. Both these important dates in musical and military history were celebrated at this year’s annual band concert conducted by the School Bandmaster, Roger Jones.
The concert, in its 21st year, featured many other pieces including Richard Rodgers’ evocative music to ‘Slaughter on Tenth Avenue’ and music from the stage shows ‘Miss Saigon’ and ‘Chicago’. There were also solo items by oboist Henry Doe in ‘The Watermill’ by Ronald Binge and Russell Farrer all dressed up in a safari outfit singing Noel Coward’s ‘Mad Dogs and Englishmen’.
The School Jazz Band, directed by brass teacher David Bolton, contributed three swinging numbers and the concert concluded with the ever popular Corps of Drums joining the band on stage to give a rousing finale to a large and enthusiastic audience.
Over the Easter holidays three of our most talented singers were involved with three separate National Youth Choir courses across the country. They came back brimming with enthusiasm and keen to tell us about the amazing time they had with like-minded musicians.
Taylor Godfrey, Yr 10
Memories of my first 5 days with the National Youth Choir will remain with me always. Being in the company of so many like-minded people was fabulous. We worked hard from 9.20am until 8.00pm, the music was great and the staff made it all the more enjoyable. Singing music which is so rarely performed was a great privilege and I look forward to singing it again at the Aldeburgh Festival and seeing the reaction of the audience. Our course was based in Banbury and we sang a concert in Worchester Cathedral where I was privileged to have sung the solo in Britten’s Children’s Crusade.
Tom Brown, Yr 8
I found the course hard but fun and after getting over the first days of not knowing anybody, I soon made lots of friends. I really enjoyed the pieces, especially the Macedonian folk song, because it was a language that I had never sung in before. For the first time, I sang Soprano 2 and it was a great to sing in a different pitch and sight read harder music, especially in different languages (German too!). After the second day, I found friends to play football with and we had lots of social activities to give us a break from singing – Easter egg hunts, limbo and a big sports competition. A great experience but lots of hard work!! Roll on the summer course…..
George Rennison, Yr 12
Doing NYC was one of the best things to happen in my life so far. It was amazing fun to meet loads of new and talented people, and to make incredible music outside of school.
On the evening of Saturday 29 March the combined vocal forces of the Royal Hospital School assembled in the Chapel for the first Choirs’ Concert of its kind, featuring not only the Chapel Choir but also the Show Choir, Chamber Choir and Barbershop Group. The evening, which was masterfully compèred by Head of Singing Dominic Peckham, began with a spellbinding performance of Dobrinka Tabakova’s highly atmospheric anthem Praise, sung from the organ loft by the Chapel Choir and conducted by William Saunders, Director of Music. The audience were seated in the east end of Chapel facing the back, an innovation that enabled much greater communication between them and the Choir. The first half continued with a mix of newer music and some sacred choral classics, including Howard Goodall’s much loved setting of Psalm 23 and CV Stanford’s vigorous Ye Choirs of New Jerusalem, and there were most impressive solo performances from Taylor Godfrey (soprano) and Ben Banks (organ). The Choir sounded really superb in their new location and it was a joy to hear the fabulous colours of our Grand Organ used to accompany them.
The Show Choir, led by Assistant Director of Music Alice Reidy, opened the second half of the concert with a rousing rendition of Pharell Williams’ Happy‘ from the front of Chapel. The lighter, secular atmosphere continued with the triumphant appearance of the Barbershop Group, directed by Christian White, Head of Sixth Form, singing two close harmony classics with great accuracy, style and panache. The highlight for many, however, will have been the performance of the Chamber Choir, conducted by Alice Reidy, who sang two extremely poignant pieces of music: Benjamin Britten’s Hymn to the Virgin and the late Sir John Tavener’s The Lamb, the latter favourite proving especially moving in light of the composer’s recent death. Both of these are technically and musically testing and the Choir rose to the challenge with sensitivity and aplomb. Dominic Peckham then took charge; first leading the Chamber Choir in an exquisitely expressive interpretation of Byrd’s Ave Verum Corpus and then, in perhaps the climax of the evening, bringing all the performers and audience to their feet in a thrilling “mash-up” of Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall and Queen’s I want it all, among others. To close the concert with all who had participated, both performers and audience, joining together in song was a joyous end to a wonderful evening.
This week Crompton Organ Scholar, Oliver Morris, plays a classic piece on the Grand Organ.
Toccata in D minor, by JS Bach, is one of the most famous works in the organ repertoire. It has been used in film, video games, rock music and ringtones. One of the most famous adaptations of the piece was for the 1962 version of ‘The Phantom of the Opera’.
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The latest upload on the Royal Hospital School’s Organ YouTube channel is now ready to be viewed (and listened to). This week Oliver Morris, Crompton Organ Scholar is playing Ave Maria by Franz Liszt.
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