Last week we welcomed eminent British composer Robert Saxton to School to give an inspiring seminar to composition pupils. Currently university Lecturer and Tutorial Fellow at Worcester College, Oxford, his recent works include radio opera, The Wandering Jew, released on NMC in June 2011 and Quartet No. 3 for the Arditti String Quartet commissioned by the South Bank Centre. Future commissions include an organ work for sound festival in Aberdeen and a song cycle for the Oxford Lieder Festival in 2012.
On the same day, the magnificence and splendour of no less than 20 trombones could be heard resounding throughout the School, when the Royal College of Music Trombone Ensemble came in to give a workshop to our pupils followed by a fantastic concert.
Well done to the nine Purcell pupils who will be taking up places in the National Youth Orchestra for 2013.
Roberta Burn (harp, LVI)
Josh Dalton (violin, UVI)
Lydia Dobson (cello, LVI)
Victoria Gill (violin, yr11)
William Gough (bassoon, yr11)
Matthew Higham (flute, yr10)
Matthew Paris (bass, yr10)
Daniel Shao (flute, UVI)
Polly Scholte Sikorsky (violin, yr11)
The NYO starts the year with concerts at Leeds Town Hall on Saturday 5 January and London’s Barbican Hall on Sunday 6 January (matinee). Under the baton of John Wilson they will be performing Britten’s Four Sea Interludes from Peter Grimes, Holst’s The Planets suite and John Adams’s Guide to Strange Places. More information can be found at www.nyo.org.uk
Congratulations to pianist and Purcell alumna, Melis Ömeroğlu, who is the recipient of two prizes at Trinity Laban: the Nancy Thomas Prize for the highest achieving undergraduate piano student and the Trinity Laban Trust Silver Medal Keyboard Prize awarded to the 4th Year BMus student making the most outstanding contribution to the work of the Keyboard Department.
Cellist, Margarita Balanas (UVI) appears on the video for the new Robbie Williams single Different.
Margarita had a lot of fun and a very exciting day at 3 Mills Studios over the October half term, filming footage for the video, which involves Robbie conducting a string orchestra. The video can be viewed here: http://ow.ly/fuOIm and the single is released on 17 December!
Congratulations to Mackenzie Kavanagh who, on Sunday 28th October, competed in the Regional Final of Open Mic UK 2012 in front of a live audience and was selected by a panel of industry judges to go through to the Area Final. She is now just one step away from the Grand Final at the 02! http://m.watfordobserver.co.uk/news/10030977.Teenager_
Two Purcell flautists have just given their Carnegie Hall debut! Matthew Higham (Yr 10), taught by Anna Pope and Daniel Shao (UVI), taught by Katie Bicknall were awarded First Prize in their respective age categories at the 2012 Alexander & Buono International Flute Competition.
As a result of their achievement, they travelled to New York to perform at the Winners’ Recital on Sunday 21 October at the prestigious Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.
Both Matthew and Daniel were praised by the judges for their interpretation, musicality and technical expertise.
Well done both!
Yesterday afternoon, the Symphony Orchestra gave a fantastic performance at the Watford Colosseum. They played to a big audience at the matinee concert, conducted by Kevin Hathway, Head of Wind, Brass and Percussion at the School.
The orchestra performed Shchedrin's Carmen Suite, Stravinsky's Pulcinella, Mendelssohn's Italian Symphony and Tchaikovsky's Rococo Variations with cellist Kristiana Ignatjeva, who finished her studies at Purcell last year and is now in her first year at the Royal College of Music.
Our school harp quartet entertained patrons in the foyer before the concert.
Lots of primary school age children came with their parents and enjoyed filling in our activity sheets, learning about percussion instruments in the orchestra and taking part in our Pulcinella drawing competition! The picture to the right is of Kevin presenting the winner with a sweetcorn shaker (with prizes like that, who could resist!)