Live music-making returned to Oakham on a grand scale as the School hosted its first ever Outdoor Musical Spectacular on the evening of Thursday 1 July. With excellent weather and a socially-distanced audience comprising hundreds of families, friends, staff and pupils, it was a great joy to celebrate the end of the School year with performances from three of the School’s top instrumental ensembles.
The Symphony Orchestra opened the concert under the batons of the Director of Music & Assistant Director of Music, contrasting favourite works by Vaughan Williams (The Wasps Overture) & Bizet (The Toreadors, from Carmen) with exciting film music from Pirates of Caribbean. The Concert Band followed with a medley of James Bond themes, an arrangement of John Miles’ 1976 hit song, Music, and Sir Henry Wood’s famous Fantasia on British Sea Songs.
Under the direction of Steve Foster, the School’s Big Band has a strong track record of mounting entertaining performances at the end of the Summer Term, and it was entirely appropriate that the second of half of this concert was dedicated to them. Their twelve contrasting numbers embraced terrific pop, Latin, and swing arrangements, as well as accompanying our four fabulous Form 7 vocal soloists – Bethany, Fabia, Issy & Lizzie – with great skill and style.
Director of Music, Peter Davis, was delighted with the success of the event, reflecting that “it was so wonderful for the pupils to enjoy the thrill of live performance in front of audience again after such a long break in major concerts. I am indebted to the pupils for their excellent music-making and for sustaining their commitment to music over the past year, with tireless support from the committed Music Department staff. We are incredibly grateful to all those who joined us for this wonderful musical celebration at the end of the School year.”