Music and Drama
Walking through the school, the sound of music echoes around the corridors and classrooms. The strains of an instrument in practice, the rehearsal of a new song or the simple tinkling of a triangle lends a glorious rhythm to the day.
There is a popular choir which rehearses one lunchtime every week. There are no auditions - interested pupils can simply turn up. The choir performs at a number of special occasions during the year, including concerts in school and the end-of-term services at Chester Cathedral.
As pupils become more proficient on their chosen instrument, they can join the school orchestra. Music is specially written for the pupils, and all abilities are catered for. We play a wide range of music, from TV themes and movie soundtracks to classical.
All pupils learn to play the descant recorder in year one as part of their music lessons.
Pupils often bring their musical instruments to school to accompany hymns in morning assembly.
Junior concerts, theatrical productions, daily assemblies and end-of-term Cathedral services are all opportunities for children to perform and shine. Theatrical high points of the school year, for parents and children alike, are the J2 play in the Lent term and the J4 play in the Summer term. The Junior School productions are renowned for their polish and professionalism. Pupils present these shows in the outstanding surroundings of the school's newly-built Vanbrugh Theatre.
Our young thespians also compete in Chester's Festival of Speech and Drama, hosted by the school, regularly winning top accolades. Pupils may also choose to rehearse for Trinity Guildhall performance exams, with a visiting professional theatre director.
Scheherazade – A production by J2 pupils in 2012
The exotic delights of the Persian Court were brought to the stage of the Vanbrugh Theatre as the children of J2 performed a spectacular interpretation of "Scheherazade".
The magic begins when two children, played by Lily Walker and Tom Hughes, discover an ancient, dust-covered book – Tales of The Arabian Nights - in an antique shop. A mysterious shopkeeper, played by George Arnold, begins to reveal the fable.
A story of love, intrigue and power, the plot revolves around the beautiful Scheherazade, played by the charming Mansi Gupta, who must entertain the sinister Sultan or risk a trip to the executioner's block. Scheherazade beguiles the Sultan, played with authority by Angus Millard, with her cleverly interwoven stories of Arabia.
The famous tales of the Beggar, Ali Baba, the Fisherman and the Stone King were dramatised by a magnificent cast, in a play written by Nick Perrin and adapted for the 59 children by director and J2 teacher Jan Anderson.
Sumptuous costumes were provided by the family and friends of the children, along with teachers Pennie Aspinwall and Jo Benson. Music was directed by Barbara Roberts, supported by a merry band of percussionists.View Photo Album
Macbeth – A production by J4 pupils in 2012
Thunder cracks across the blasted heath and three weird sisters emerge from the mist to foretell a story of power, betrayal and murder. The sinister scene has been set, and the audience in the Vanbrugh Theatre await the blood-soaked tale of Shakespeare's Macbeth to unfold.
Macbeth, powerfully played by Will Medland, plots his way to the crown and glory in a Shakespeare for Kidz production. He is spurred on by his scheming wife, Lady Macbeth, maturely interpreted by Anna Chadwick.
Stirring songs, particularly "Scotland For Ever", were performed with a magnificent passion, skilfully supported by the school orchestra.
Using a thrust stage, director Vanessa Gibson brought the murderous Scottish warrior to life in an adaptation cleverly woven with dance, high drama and song. Magnificent costumes in heather hues were created by art teacher Kirsty Savage, adding a professional styling to the show.