Oakham’s alumni have been enjoying the spotlight recently in the world of music, drama, art and sport.
This year’s Proms featured not one, not two, but three OOs performing, including the opening two nights of the Festival.
Daniel Hyde (‘98) kicked off this year’s festival as the featured soloist of the First Night of The Proms, performing Poulenc’s Organ Concerto. His performance was praised by several major news outlets, with the Guardian commenting that he “tamed the beast that is the Albert Hall’s 9,999-pipe organ, revelling in the instrument’s possibilities yet always in conversation with the BBC Symphony Orchestra’s strings”.
The following night, Katie Hall (‘08), making her first appearance since becoming a mum, was one of a quintet of soloists for The Golden Age of Broadway, wowing the Royal Albert Hall with a selection of classic hits by Cole Porter, Richard Rodgers, George Gershwin, Frederick Loewe and Irving Berlin. Katie returns to the stage as Fantine in Les Misérables, playing throughout December at the Theatre Royal in Glasgow, the first stop of a UK & Ireland tour.
Dingle Yandell (‘00) completed the trio of performances when he joined Sir John Gardiner and the Monteverdi Choir as a soloist for a Prom featuring works by Handel and Bach.
Meanwhile in the world of indie rock, the band Sea Girls, featuring OOs Henry Camamile (’12), Andrew Dawson (’11), Rory Young (’11) and Oli Khan (’11), were able to get back on the stage this year, with Main Stage performances at Latitude, Reading and Leeds, Neighbourhood Weekender Festivals, as well as a sold-out UK tour in October. Their new album, Homesick, is coming out in 2022, which will be followed by a European Tour in the spring.
Actor Richard Hope (’71) will feature in 1899, a new Netflix series from the creators of Dark, due to be released in 2022. Richard also stars in The Village in the Woods, ‘A love letter to 70s cinema’ from director Raine McCormack, available to stream or purchase on Amazon, iTunes, Sky & Virgin.
Sarah Moss (’04) returned to the stage earlier this year, joining the cast of The Mousetrap for its West End re-opening. Following the success of last year’s Panto Online campaign, Sarah has also teamed up with director Peter Duncan once again, playing the Fairy Godmother in Cinderella. Tickets are available at pantoonline.co.uk.
Matthew Macfadyen (’92) has returned to the screen as Tom Wambsgams for Season 3 of Succession, available on Sky Atlantic. Matthew was nominated for a Primetime Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series in 2020 for his work on Season 2. He returns to the silver screen in Operation Mincemeat, playing Charles Cholmondeley, opposite his fellow Mr Darcy, Colin Firth, as Ewen Montagu, coming to cinemas on 14 January 2022.
Annabelle Apsion (’78) returns as Violet Buckle in Season 11 of Call the Midwife, due out in January 2022. Call the Midwife’s Christmas special will air on BBC1 on Christmas Day at 8.00pm.
Anna Gonzalez (‘16) recently launched her new classical art print business ‘Aster&Selene’ and has donated two of her beautiful prints to Oakham School’s Classics Department.
Anna started the business as a ‘lockdown project’ and as a classicist and lover of design, she decided to create and sell products that honour the origins of the classical style. Aster&Selene is named after the moon goddess, Selene, and her son, Aster (the star).
Anna draws everything digitally on her iPad and then her designs are printed onto premium art paper. All packaging is biodegradable (even the cellophane sleeves) and she has created a unique unwrapping experience with her own branding.
Anna’s prints are available to purchase via her Etsy shop on this link: www.etsy.com/shop/AsterAndSelene
In rugby Hamish Watson (’10) had an incredible year, being named the Six Nations Player of the Tournament and selected in the British and Irish Lions squad for their tour to South Africa, which included a Man of the Match performance against the Sigma Lions. His fine form has continued this season and he was named Man of the Match as Scotland beat Australia 15-13 at Murrayfield in the Autumn Internationals. Hamish dedicated his Lions jersey to his former mentor Ian Smith, which can be found hanging in Chapel Close.
Jack van Poortvliet (’19) led England’s victorious U20 Six Nations Campaign. Jack was named Player of the Tournament as he captained England to the Grand Slam. He has continued his fine form with some excellent displays for Leicester as the Tigers have made their best start to a season in Premiership history. Jack captained a 32-23 victory against Sale Sharks in the Premiership Rugby Cup in which his fellow OO Jacob Cusick (’21) made his senior competitive debut for Tigers.
Sam Costelow (’19) also played at the U20 Six Nations tournament, playing fly-half for Wales, including a stand-out performance against Italy, kicking 18 of Wales’ 25 points in the Cardiff rain. Sam has been in fine form for Scarlets, and was called up to train with the Wales senior squad earlier this year.
Alex Goode (’06) returned from his loan spell in Japan to help Saracens get promoted back to the Premiership. Sam Wolstenholme (’17) had a good season at scrum-half for Wasps, and captained his side in a Premiership Rugby Cup fixture against the Newcastle Falcons.
In shooting Rick Shouler ('95) won the most coveted Target Rifle shooting trophy, the Queen’s Prize. The shooting competition took place at the National Shooting Centre at Bisley, and involved shooting at distances ranging from 300 to 1000 yards. Rick competed against shooters from far and wide and showed a superb display of marksmanship, securing the prize with a total of 298.35v (ex 300.60v).
Traditional celebrations saw Rick being carried off the range in a sedan chair to NRA headquarters by his peers. Rick now earns the right to have the initials ‘GM’ after his name.