Our Autumn concert opened with the Concert Band, performing Share my yoke by Major Joy Webb of The Salvation Army, arranged by Bandmaster Ivor Bosanko. This lyrical and contemplative piece featured a trumpet solo, played by 6th former, Freddie. This was followed by The Last Centaur by Galente. A complete contrast to the opening, this was a dramatic musical depiction of a centaur separated from his family by war, in the style of a grand, descriptive film score.
The Form 1 Singers, then performed two songs that they had been learning in lessons since September. Hear the wind by Crocker used a beautiful, flowing melody to describe a rural countryside, with an invitation to ‘follow me'. This was followed by the upbeat gospel song, Oh, won’t you sit down? arranged by Davies. This lively song refers to familiar biblical figures, such as Moses and Solomon, with each being represented by a different colour of clothing.
The Chamber Choir ended the first half with two songs. The first was Lux Aeterna by Latvian composer, Eriks Ešenvalds. This stunning 21st century a cappella piece sets a passage from the Latin Requiem Mass, ending with Grant them eternal rest, Lord. Darke’s cantata, As the leaves fall (written in the summer of 1917) completed the first half. This piece featured a soprano solo, performed by 7th former, Lily, and was accompanied by Mr H Jacques.
After the interval, the Symphony Orchestra performed two pieces by World War 1 poet and composer, Ivor Gurney. By a bierside, sung by 6th former Grace, was composed in the trenches by Gurney, and sent to Herbert Howells, who orchestrated it. The song concludes with the words ‘It is most grand to die’ and is described as one of Gurney’s outstanding masterpieces. His War Elegy followed; composed in 1920, this piece opens with the solemn march of soldiers, reflected in the lower strings. The concert concluded with Rossini’s famous William Tell overture, describing scenes from the opera, such as raindrops leading to a violent storm, the pastoral countryside, and the familiar rhythm of the galloping horses.