The annual House Music competition has been a fixture in the school since 1984, and always fires up the interest and competitive streak in our musicians. Now staged in mid February, it is essentially two different competitions on one evening – a Singing competition for the Fenter Singing Cup (with songs sung by Year 4 and 5 children), and an Instrumental competition for the beautiful Messenger Trophy (awarded for ensemble playing by children in senior school).
This year’s contest was expertly adjudicated by Mr Jonathan Brown, Director of Music at Malvern College, who was informative and encouraging at the same time. The Singing was won by the Normans (with Saxons a close second). The victors sang the test song “Skull and Crossbones” and “Donkey Riding” with verve and variety. The Instrumental competition saw the Saxons edge ahead of the Celts after a performance of “Raindrops keep fallin’ on my head” and “The Elephant” by Saint-Saens – the latter featuring captain Guy Davies on Eb tuba.
A feature of the evening was a wide range of instruments on display – four French horns no less – and a harp introduction by Ellie Hancock for the Celts (very appropriate!). The Celts also supplied a different pianist for each of their two pieces, with Tim Giles and Olly Cool featuring effectively. The music on offer was varied too – from a Renaissance Alman to Ed Sheeran – and well handled, with many groups electing to play unaccompanied.
We look forward after half term to combining all these musicians into our Orchestra and preparing for what promises to be a fine Summer of music!