The Ingenium 2016 Blog - Week 2 Weekend Update
31 July 2016
What a weekend! Our London concert at St James's Piccadilly was a great success, with brilliant performances from everyone and a packed audience.
Friday was our last chance to polish our performance for Saturday's concert, so some extra time for private practice was worked into the day alongside our usual rehearsal schedule. We welcomed back Peter Sparks (clarinet) and Catherine Ring (percussion) for individual lessons, and everyone worked incredibly hard to be as prepared as possible before our trip to London. During the afternoon Adam Saunders led the instrumental students in an improvisation workshop, and we welcomed back Judith Kleinman to coach our vocalists in Alexander Technique. Our pianists also had a class on stage deportment - an essential skill, and one which would come in useful during Saturday's concert.
After a long day's work we were rewarded by our Friday barbecue, with football and rounders. It was great to relax and blow off some steam, and great to see how close the students have become after only one week. At the end of the evening there was also the traditional water balloon barrage - the students' chance to pelt the pastoral staff with almost 200 water balloons. Luckily it was a warm night!
Saturday was a really big day, and at 8am we piled excitedly into coaches to set off to our nation's capital city. The morning was spent enjoying a historical walking tour around Westminster, where we took in sights including 10 Downing Street, Westminster Cathedral, the Houses of Parliament, Trafalgar Square and of course Buckingham Palace. We split into two groups for the tour, but managed to meet in the middle for a whole-school photograph in front of Big Ben (or the Elizabeth Tower, as we found out it is actually called!).
After a picnic lunch we spent the afternoon in our beautiful concert venue, St James's Church on Piccadilly, getting used to the acoustic and putting the finishing touches to our programme. Sadly some people were leaving us the next day, so we also held our awards ceremony and the departing students received their certificates, presented by our pastoral team.
The concert began at 7pm, and was utterly magnificent throughout. We were so proud to watch the results of everyone's hard work, and see our students perform some very challenging repertoire with real passion and musicality. It was a wonderful opportunity for parents to see what we have been working on, and for us to share how much we have enjoyed our first two weeks working with such a talented group of young people from all over the world.
Musicians of the day
Hannah & Aditi: Hannah for intelligent, thoughtful contributions to forum and for being so articulate in musicianship, and Aditi for keeping her composure in the stage deportment class.
Lara for a beautiful solo, sung sonfidently and well.
The whole orchestra! Tom wanted to reward each and every one of you for your dedication, professionalism and teamwork.