A number of musical activities are available for students at Wellington College. We offer a variety of orchestras and choirs for boys and girls.
Staying behind for Band rehearsals on a Friday after school isn’t on the top of everyone’s to do lists but without fail the members of the Concert Band were always prepared to stay and practice pieces from 2.45-3.45.
Despite the friendly pranks throughout the year, the band has really come together and is no longer just a group of people playing music but a group of good friends. This year was a big year for the band not only playing on open nights and Spring Concerts but also charity events. At the Spring Concert the band played ‘The Simpsons’, “In the Mood” featuring soloist Chris Chambers and “Copacobana” featuring soloists Nathan Wafflart and Callum Hutchinson.
Charity events are a huge part of life in the College and for the band this was no exception with the highlight of the year for many members of the band performing, “Jingle Bell Rock” and “Sleigh Ride” at the “Sound of Action” for Action Cancer. The band wishes to continue this annual charity event next year as it is an evening well enjoyed by all.
Our upper sixth music prefects played a great role behind the scenes, sorting out our music into folders and tidying away all our music and stands at the end of the rehearsals. A big thank you to our upper sixths Adam McVeigh and Janet Duignan.
A massive well done to the well kept attendance from the members of the Concert Band. This group couldn’t have put on the performance they did at the Spring Concert if it wasn’t for Mrs McCloskey. Many thanks for the time and effort that you put into the rehearsals.
By Rachelle Montgomery
The clarinet group rehearse every Monday morning and sometimes Thursdays and is taken by a past pupil, Beverley Hill. The group comprises of Christopher Marshall, David Montgomery, Jordan Fitzpatrick, Eden Smyth and Aaron Wafflart. We met every week in preparation for the Christingle Service at Christmas and Spring Concert before Easter. At the Christingle Service we joined up with the Flute Group and played ‘Angels from the realms of Glory’ and in the Spring Concert we played Jazz Gavotte by Fairhead. We all worked really hard and put on a great show. We all became closer friends in our effort and hope to become even closer next year. A big thanks to Beverley Hill for all her hard work, commitment and patience throughout the year.
By Aaron Wafflart
The Flute Group met up every Monday morning and was taken every week by a past pupil, Lauren Montgomery. It consisted of Naomi Smyth, Kathryn Johnston, Emma Murdock, Hannah Cordner, Ethan Hutchison and Lydia Mayes. We practiced every week for the Christingle service at Christmas and the Spring Concert, which happened just before Easter. For the Christingle Service we played ‘Angels from the Realms of Glory’ with the Clarinet Group and for the Spring Concert we played ‘Once Upon A Dream’ by Tchaikovsky. I loved going to the practice each week because we have all become so much closer and I can’t wait for next year! A big thanks must go to Lauren Montgomery for all the time she spent preparing us throughout the year.
By Lydia Mayes
Orchestra practices began at the beginning of the school year on Thursday mornings from 8.30am to 9.10am. It is fair to say that these practices weren’t the main priorities of the orchestra members as only half of the orchestra would turn up each week which was very disappointing. Although after Christmas everyone pulled their weight and started practicing hard for the upcoming Spring Concert. We played famous pieces such as Eastenders and Star Wars as well as many other pieces. This year in the Spring Concert the orchestra collaborated with the band and also the choirs for the finale performance of ABBA. The spring Concert was a major success as all the pieces went smoothly and were well received.
I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank Mrs McCloskey (conductor) as well as other members of the college staff such as Miss Smyth and Mrs Smyth who played a long side us as they put an awful lot of effort and time into rehearsals. Well done to the orchestra for all the hard work they put in throughout the year!
By Bradley Long
GCSE Music Ensemble
As I was studying music for GCSE I had to play in an ensemble for my practical music exam. This ensemble consisted of Mrs McCloskey (piano), Aaron Wafflart (clarinet), Michael Culbert (djembe) and myself playing the cello and also leading the ensemble. We played the piece Ashokan farewell by jay Ungar at the spring concert. The piece was originally written for cello and two violins but we decided to make the piece more exciting by using a clarinet, piano and djembe instead. The piece was a major success at the Spring Concert and also my music exam as all the hard work paid off. Thanks needs to go to all members of the ensemble for playing with me at the Spring Concert and also my practical exam as I appreciate the effort everyone put into it!
By Bradley Long
Senior Brass Group
The Senior Brass Group has worked extremely hard this year every Tuesday morning and break time, especially in the lead up to the annual Spring Concert. Having toiled over a few pieces, the Brass Group, consisting of Rachel Young (trumpet), Janet Duignan (trumpet), Peter Spiers (French Horn), Lucy Armstrong (Tenor Horn), Calum Hutchinson (Euphonium) and Nathan Wafflart (Trombone), tackled a very specific style of music this year, performing two pieces from musical theatre: Ol’ Man River from Showboat and Comedy Tonight from the musical A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. Both of these pieces required good communication from each member, and the group played them excellently at both the Spring Concert (which was given an extra touch of humour from the trombonist, who inadvertently learnt to fly) and the GCSE music practical examinations.
Thanks go to Mrs McCloskey for organising and helping rehearsals, and to Miss Kelly, who performed last-minute when we were missing a player.
By Nathan Wafflart 11GN
Junior Brass Group
The junior brass group this year was made up of Daniel Buckley (trumpet), Jenny Ingram (trumpet) and Jonny Wilson (Cornet). Miss Kelly the school brass tutor rehearsed with our group every Tuesday morning and prepared us thoroughly for each event. Our first performance was at the School Christingle Service where we played ‘Away in a Manger’ and ‘Hark the Herald Angels Sing’.
Our second performance was at the annual Spring Concert. We played ‘The Truth’ and ‘Brass Bell Boogie’. We are all looking forward to next year as we will hopefully be participating in some music festivals.
Many thanks must go to Miss Kelly for all her hard work and commitment throughout the year.
By Jenny Ingram
Junior Flute Group
There is a new Junior Flute Group which has started in the College under the tutelage of Kathryn Johnston Year 14. The group hope to work on duet pieces to be performed at College events such as the Christingle & The Spring Concert. In the picture is Emily Linn & Tina Dong (Year 9) along with Kathryn Johnston (Year 14). Anyone who plays a wind instrument in Years 8-10 is eligible & welcome to join.