The main concert of the year, this year’s Summer Concert in which all the various musical ensembles in the Prep School performed, was a smorgasbord of musicality.
Junior Choir opened the concert with a rousing and enthusiastic performance of ‘Sing’ by Gary Barlow and Andrew Lloyd Webber, eagerly followed by the Year 5 String Quartet and the Peri String Quartet aptly playing the ‘Coronation of Poppea’ by Montiverdi, giving the boys the opportunity to play alongside professionals as colleagues and they acquitted themselves superbly.
Giving a Last Night of the Proms feel to the occasion, Junior Handbells delighted with Elgar’s ‘Pomp and Circumstance March’. Their concentration was evident, resulting in a resounding performance. Following this, Cello Trio rollicked their way through Mrs Ratcliff’s excellent arrangement of ‘Oklahoma’ relishing the music with gusto and the Year 6 Violin Trio gave a beautifully lyrical performance of ‘In an English Country Garden’.
Guitar Ensemble played two lovely pieces with Miss Warner; the sound of guitars playing together was mesmerising. The Davenies Stingers, under the direction of Mrs Suggett, had great fun singing ‘Here Comes the Sun’ and ‘Three Little Birds’. The audience loved the music and so did the Stingers! An immediate contrast ensued with the Chamber Choir singing ‘Country Garden’ and ‘The Beauty of the Earth’, also under Mrs Suggett’s direction. Their lyrical singing was a joy to hear.
The Friends of Davenies Choir gave a charming arrangement of the very English song ‘Greensleeves’ and the audience were then invited to sing along with FoD Choir and the Chamber Choir for a performance of ‘A Life of Grace’.
The School Orchestra gave a rousing performance of ‘The Dambusters March’ by Eric Coates made famous by the film of the same name and, continuing the film music theme, Senior Handbells gave an excellent performance of ‘Hedwig’s Theme’ from Harry Potter – an extremely difficult arrangement with boys playing up to five different bells in quick succession!
Our Year 8 soloists included Thomas Gilham on the tuba, Max Marson-Day, who sang ‘Homeward Bound’ by Paul Simon, Hugh Suggett on the French horn with a Mendelssohn piece, ‘Nocturne’ from A Midsummer Night’s Dream and George Watson, with a stunning rendition of ‘You’ll be Back’ from Hamilton the Musical, who really brought the house down with his singing and acting abilities and his passionate performance!
Brass Ensemble, with what seemed like a plethora of trombones and trumpets, plus a French horn and tuba, played ‘What A Wonderful World’, which was enthusiastically received by the audience.
The Year 8 Vocal Quartet trained by Mr Gilbert gave a stunning performance of ‘Hear My Prayer’ by Mendelssohn. All the boys soared effortlessly over the top notes and their musicality was wonderful.
Senior Chamber Music then took us into the 21st Century with their very own arrangement of the Usher song ‘DJ Got Us Fallin’ In Love’. This was a very well-crafted arrangement and was a huge hit with the audience as was the Rock Band which followed performing ‘Go Crazy’ (J.Legend) and ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ (Nirvana) under the tutelage of Mr Sculpher.
Jazz Band got everyone’s foot tapping with ‘Curtain Call Blues’, ‘Watermelon Man’ and ‘Jazz Etude’ under the guidance of Mr Gater.
The Grand Finale was back to tradition with the thrilling ‘Zadok the Priest’ by Handel performed by The Friends of Davenies Choir, the Chamber Choir and the Peri Staff String quartet, conducted by Mrs Suggett. This gave a rousing finish to a hugely enjoyable evening and the audience really showed their appreciation at the end.
The School is owned by Beaconsfield Educational Trust Limited, a company limited by guarantee, whose registered office is at 73 Station Road, Beaconsfield, Bucks HP9 1AA. Registration No. 717500 Registered Charity No. 313120