On Friday 5th October, the annual Cecilia James Company Music Festival took place and was adjudicated by Jo May (an orchestral percussionist who trained at the Royal College of Music and a folk musician). It began with the Instrumental Ensembles with each Company representing themselves well, with a variety of different sized groups and unique blends of instruments. The Instrumental Ensemble Cup and cheque was won by Moberly, led by Ila playing her own arrangement of All I Want by Kodaline. They were chosen for their expressive performance and brilliant communication within the group.
The afternoon classes continued after lunch with Brass, Percussion and Guitar, Voice, Woodwind, Strings and Piano. Osmund won the Brass Category, with Kirsten’s playing of the flugelhorn. Grosstête took the next prize with Head Girl, Hannah, victorious in the Percussion and Guitar group. Moberly won the next two classes with Hannah singing her way to success and flautist Shubha winning in the woodwind category. Strings were taken by Ed Rich’s Tasha playing cello and Joanna clinched the piano round and the Anna Roberts Cup for Grosstête.
The evening kicked off with the final of the Cecilia James Solo Prize, with all the soloists giving amazing performances. In the end, the very worthy winner of this coveted prize was Hannah, exciting the audience with her utter mastery of the drum-kit.
As always, the Vocal Ensembles proved entertaining, with their mix of vocal skill, choreography and comedy. Hannah was to follow her earlier success by leading Grosstête to take this category with a mash-up of Stand by me, Beautiful girls and Just the way you are. For the first time ever, staff got in on the act with Miss Evans leading the teachers (seen as never seen before) in the song Money, money, money.
This year, the theme for the Shout was 'Abba', with rousing renditions of Does Your Mother Know, Lay all your love on me, Gimme, gimme, gimme (a man after midnight), Mamma Mia and Waterloo. The girls were accompanied by a live band, consisting of our very own Mr Allard, Mr Witney, Mrs Allard and ex-St Mary’s teacher, Mr Malcolm. It was a difficult decision to call a winner, as every Company excelled in their choice of song, wacky movements and colourful costumes. Osmund pipped the other companies at the post for the 'Shout' and the overall Music Festival winner was Grosstête.
Mrs Rachel Allard, Music Teacher