House Music Festival 2020 – the show must go on

House Music Festival 2020 – the show must go on

Mr John Hargreaves, Director of Music

The decision to go ahead with the House Music Festival during lockdown proved to be the right one. Despite my fears that no one would enter, and with only a handful of responses and promises, in true Woldingham fashion I was inundated with entries – mostly after the deadline. But that’s what deadlines are for, apparently.

I thoroughly enjoyed listening to and watching all the performances and was encouraged by the variety of music, in style, genre and instrumentation. For the first time we had music making on Cajun and Guzheng. Students self-accompanied, or joined forces in ensemble, and we even had a new composition. I was extremely impressed by the resourcefulness of our musicians. As for quality, I am always confident our musicians will deliver performances of a high standard. And this year has been no exception. All the entries were well rehearsed and performed, and musical.

Rosie Whitfield, Head of Junior Guildhall Music, kindly accepted the invitation to adjudicate the festival. For every performance entered, including where students sent in recordings of two different pieces, a point was awarded to each student’s House. Additional points were awarded for winners and runners-up. Students were also invited to vote on the performances.  These results, plus the initial adjudication by Rosie Whitfield and me, narrowed the field down to the finalists, something we would have done had we been in school. From these Rosie made a more detailed adjudication, with the results as follows:

Best Wind Performance: Rosie, Year 10 (Flute)

Best Strings Performance: Sally, Year 7 (Guzheng)

Musgrave Trophy for Best Piano Performance: Olivia, Year 10

Elizabeth Cup for Most Outstanding Vocalist: Saskia, Year 10

Best Ensemble Performance: Clemmie, Year 8 and Ava, Year 8

Most Promising Musician grades 1-4: Sally, Year 8

Most Promising Musician Overall: Stephanie, Year 10 (solo, vocal ensemble, flute ensemble)

House Music Trophy: Digby

Most Outstanding Musician 2020: Olivia, Year 10

Congratulations to all, and particularly to Olivia.

You can see all the results and the winning performances on the special House Music Festival - The Final 2020 video

Many thanks to all who contributed, to all who watched and enjoyed the performances, to all who voted, and to the wonderful team of Visiting Music Teachers who tutored and helped prepare many of the pieces.