The Christ’s Hospital big school was abuzz with over 400 concert-goers on March 4, eager to witness one of the most anticipated events in the calendar: the band concert.
The event was directed and hosted with style and enthusiasm by bandmaster Terry Whittingham.
The Christ’s Hospital band and training band characteristically rose to the occasion to provide an afternoon of skill, talent, and entertainment.
A typically varied programme included Wagner,Arnold, Holst, the Beatles and Queen.
The band in unison is undoubtedly a sound to behold but a particularly special feature was the spotlight on several soloists and smaller groups of instrumentalists.
Emmanuel Odujebe, 16, delighted the audience with his carefully crafted rendition of Harold Moss’ The Joker.
Four of the most senior and accomplished trumpeters, Alex Stewart, Peter Batchelar, Will Awdry and Oscar Wells displayed their skill in The Summit by John Moss.
Additionally, no less than 14 clarinettists from across the school – ranging in age from 12-year-old William Rodgers to sixth formers Roland Bukenya, Lottie Woodall and band captain Yun Shin – took centre stage for Leroy Anderson’s light-hearted and vociferous Clarinet Candy, a melody that resonated for several days after.
The training band, made up of the school’s younger pupils, proved to be in excellent form.
They began with a sprightly Uptown Funk and finished with the old favourite Hey Jude.
The talent coming through in the lower years is a very exciting prospect indeed.
The band reclaimed the stage to finish the programme. Oscar Wells’ trumpet solo in Amazing Grace – full of blues notes and tight syncopation – was accomplished and characterful, and Holst’s well-loved First Suite in E flat provided an affirming and impressive conclusion.
Thanks and congratulations to all who took part in this concert and indeed to all the members of the Band who work so hard, day in day out, all year round.