We were delighted that pupils from The Purcell School were able to perform at Westminster Abbey for the Commonwealth Service on 13th March 2017. The event is highly prestigious and forms a key part of Commonwealth Day, which celebrates the 52 member countries. This year’s service, hosted by the Royal Commonwealth Society, Westminster Abbey, and the BBC, focused on youth with around 600 school pupils in attendance.

As part of The Commonwealth Resounds, Purcell pupils performed alongside the Commonwealth Festival Choir and Orchestra. Founded by Alison Cox, Head of Composition and Outreach at the School, The Commonwealth Resounds is a charity which uses music to promote collaboration within the Commonwealth.

The programme included many pieces written by young musicians from The Purcell School. Sixth form students Pablo Barrios and Jonathan Heron collaborated on the moving piece, Song of a Dream, with help from the young singers of Harris Academy, Peckham. The Harris Academy singers also performed the new work by Year 13 pupils Zakia Fawcett and Alice McCarthy, One Song. Sixth form students Asha Parkinson and Sophia Lin had composed a piece entitled The Dove, which was sung by the Apollo Youth Choir. Three Scottish pieces, Looking Towards Caledonia, arranged by Zakia Fawcett followed and The Commonwealth Resounds concert was completed with Carol Jones’ composition, A Commonwealth for Peace. Carol is a Purcell graduate and Musician in Residence at the School.

The event was filmed for the BBC and can be watched on iPlayer here.