16 March 2023
Woldingham musicians have done themselves proud in two recent prestigious national competitions – one for ensembles and one for choirs. Music Ribbon Joyce, who took part in both, explains more:
Joyce W, Upper Sixth
Pro Corda Festival
For the 12 of us who took part in this nationwide chamber music competition for schools, Pro Corda was a fruitful and engaging experience. We participated as five ensembles, and the pieces we performed ranged from Nino Rota, a 20th-century composer's Trio for Flute, Violin, and Piano to the lively Debussy Petite Suite. Instead of the usual feedback sheets following the competition, we received feedback and suggested amendments right away in the form of a masterclass. Given that it had an immediate effect on how we performed our pieces, I thought it was highly beneficial to all of us as we were instantly able to improve. Being coached by professionals as an ensemble was such an eye-opening experience. It was an honour to be a part of the violin quartet, with Isabel, Lilico and Valia, and the flute, violin, and piano trio, with Cherry and Isabel. Both ensembles were selected to compete in this year’s final.
Girls’ Schools Association (GSA) Choir of the Year Competition
Amaris, Woldingham’s chamber choir, was delighted to be chosen to compete in the final of the GSA Choir of the Year competition in Warwick, finishing in the top three as one of the runners up in the senior choir category.
We performed Away in a Manger, written by a traditional English composer, Ronald Corp, and The Fire Dance of Luna by Darius Lim, a well-known Singaporean composer/conductor in the choral field. The two pieces were very contrasting in rhythm and atmosphere. Corp’s piece is mostly soft in dynamics and is highly legato whereas Darius Lim’s piece is energetic and strong.
We also participated in the chorus, which was a combination of both junior schools and senior schools, in which we sang a beautiful arrangement of the hymn Make me a Channel of your Peace. It was lovely to sing in such a big choir as this is usually done on the rare occasion of a chorale festival.
The competition was a wonderful experience for us as we were able to watch other schools present a large variety of choral works and learn from their performances.