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Showcasing musical excellence

Exceptional musicianship was on display as the school community came together for two significant events, Founder’s Day and the Spring Concert.

Founder’s Day celebrates 531 years of history

Pupils, staff, governors and Old Stopfordians recently gathered at St George’s Church to commemorate the foundation of the school by Sir Edmond Shaa, Lord Mayor of London and Prime Warden of the Goldsmiths Company, in 1487.

The Junior Chamber Choir sang ‘Hakuna Mungu Kama Wewe’; Chorus sang Handel’s ‘And the Glory of the Lord’ and Sixth Former Olivia White performed a beautiful soprano solo with the Chamber Choir of Stanford’s ‘Magnificat in G’.

The Canon Dr Ralph Waller, Principal of Harris Manchester College and a Pro Vice Chancellor of the University of Oxford, delivered an engaging address using a model airplane, a plate and a vase to illustrate his point. He focused his address on acts of kindness and encouragement, not only to those benefiting from the acts but the positive effect on the individual bestowing that kindness and encouragement. He emphasised the impact that this can have on a community and on a school.

Spring Concert performances delight appreciative audience

A wonderful evening of music was experienced by performers and audience alike at this year’s Spring Concert.

With the choirs and orchestras performing in front of the beautifully lit stained glass window at St George’s Church, the audience were treated to a range of pieces beginning with an enthusiastic rendition of ‘Sing On!’ and ‘Hakuna Mungu Kama Wewe’ by the Junior Chamber Choir.

Having set the joyous tone for the night, Mrs Matthews then conducted the String Orchestra with J S Bach’s ‘Suite in D Major’ and the lively ‘A British Folk Song Suite’. Both pieces highlighted the group’s impressive development as an ensemble.

Head of Music Mr Dow then took to the stage to conduct the rest of the evening, leading Chorus, First Orchestra and Chamber Choir.

Chorus sang Pergolesi’s ‘Magnificat’ with solo highlights from Beatrice Asquith (soprano), Niamh Johnson (alto), Joshua Furtado-Mendes (tenor) and Matthew Howling (bass).

Violinist soloist Elsa Shah then captivated the audience with her moving performance with First Orchestra of Svendsen’s ‘Romance for Violin and Orchestra’.

The final ensemble to perform was the Chamber Choir with ‘Highlights from Messiah’ by Handel. Natalie Bennett (soprano) and Joshua Furtado-Mendes (tenor) both had the accolade of singing solos in one of Handel’s most well known and loved choral works.

‘Hallelujah’, the last movement in the piece, was particularly rousing and a standing ovation by the audience ended a most enjoyable and high quality evening of music.