Keep up to date with everything Purcell:

Welcome to this (school) year’s first edition of Purcell’s Weekly Highlights!

Gramophone Classical Music Awards 2019

The nominations for Gramophone’s 2019 Orchestra of the Year Award (sponsored by Apple Music) have been announced! This year’s 10 nominated orchestras were: Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Staatskapelle Berlin, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia – Rome, San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, Les Siècles and finally, the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by The Purcell School President Sir Simon Rattle. The winner will be revealed at the 2019 Gramophone Classical Music Awards ceremony in London at the De Vere Grand Connaught Rooms on October 16.

Monos continues to gain praise

Renowned film critic and media platform AV Club has labelled the film as ‘apocalypse now for the teenage soldiers of the superb war drama’‘At times, the movie almost veers into fantasy, thanks in no small part to the boom and swell of another otherworldly score by Mica Levi‘It’s action moviemaking as its most thrillingly elemental, but with a troubling human dimension: the vestiges of teenage innocence glimpsed on that secluded mountain purgatory, then set ablaze in a heart of darkness.’ Having already hit the screen in the United States, Monos will be coming to cinemas across the UK on October 25th.

Dean Blunt’s New Album ZUSHI

In more exciting news for former Purcell student Mica Levi, frequent collaborator Dean Blunt has just released a new album ZUSHI. The 39-minute collection features contributions from Panda Bear, jonatan leandoer96 (aka Yung Lean), and Houston’s Sauce Walka, as well as past collaborators like Mica Levi and A$AP Rocky.

BBC Symphony Orchestra at Royal Albert Hall

Purcell Patron Sir Andrew Davis conducts the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus and mezzo-soprano Dame Sarah Connolly in Elgar’s last great choral work. The Music Makers is the musical culmination of a career, drawing together quotations from many of the composer’s best-loved pieces, including the ‘Enigma’ Variations and Sea Pictures, and weaving them into a musical manifesto for the power of art. The concert also includes Vaughan Williams’s luminous Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis for double string orchestra and Hugh Wood’s lyrical setting of scenes from Milton’s pastoral masque Comus.

50 Years in a Day

Management agency HarrisonParrott will celebrate their 50th birthday with the classical party to end all parties on October 6th at Queen Elizabeth Hall : 20 top artists, including Purcell Patron Vladimir Ashkenazy, Barbara Hannigan, Paavo Järvi and Patricia Kopatchinskaja perform three concerts in a single day. Expect a whistle-stop musical education, from Bach to Birtwistle, featuring some of the best in the business.

Jacob Collier stuns in Sydney Opera House special

Purcell alumni Jacob Collier recently made his spectacular Sydney Opera House debut amidst his world tour. In a recent review from The Sydney Morning Herald; “What would count as a highlight moment in an ordinary mortal’s concert seemed to arrive every minute or so in this two-hour marvel. Running on in an oversized white T-shirt and red-and-blue balloon pants, the 25-year-old might have passed for a trap deejay. By about a minute into opener With The Love In My Heart, having swooped all over his band’s cluttering funk track with his supple baritone while propelling it with manic drumming and a lightning-fast jazz piano line, he was already laying claim to being the best musician alive”.

Simon Rattle Webchat with The Guardian

Purcell’s President Sir Simon Rattle; the music director of the London Symphony Orchestra will will be doing a webchat interview hosted by The Guardian at 1.15pm on Monday 16 September. To put your questions forward, comment on the recent article which can be found here.

Oliver Dowden CBE MP

We were delighted to welcome our local MP, Oliver Dowden CBE, to The Purcell School today for a morning recital. Violinist Ella Richardson and pianist Yumeka Nakagawa both gave tremendous performances – with thanks to Deborah Shah for her accompaniment of the former – and Head Boy, Hugo Max, spoke with Mr Dowden about life at the school.

Inside the Life of Purcell Boarding Students

The first weekend for Purcell boarders took place at the weekend. Designed to introduce boarders across the year groups there were events on all three days. Friday evening was a barn dance accompanied by staff and pupil musicians and this was a very lively fun introduction to boarding life. Saturday included films and meals for specific year groups. Sunday was a fun activity event followed by a hog roast and alternatives. Teams took place in year groups and teams of all year groups worked together. The events included tug of war, relays and finished with teams of supersize football. This was followed by food in glorious sunshine.