School spotlight: Woldgate School: Concert showcases wealth of musical talent

TS Elliott's 'The Journey of the Magi' was read by our Head Boy and Head Girl.
TS Elliott's 'The Journey of the Magi' was read by our Head Boy and Head Girl.

Standing on tradition, Woldgate finished off the winter term at All Saints’ Church, Pocklington with an evening Christmas Concert, this showcased our wealth of musical talent from pupils and staff alike.

This was followed by three Christmas Services the next morning where the entire school shared in celebration and reflection of the year. It was wonderful to see the whole school share as one, it is what makes us a real community.

Each year, the Christmas Services are put together by a dedicated team of Year 10 pupils. They help to organise music, readings and nominate a charity they feel best represents the sentiment of the time. This years chosen charity was Amnesty International. Amnesty International work to protect men, women and children wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

The collection raised £493, thank you to everyone who contributed to the collection, and those who wrote Christmas messages which were left under the tree as part of each services.

Each service featured a wealth of musical and dramatic talent. Each pair of year groups were treated to readings from St Luke, delivered in English and in French by Year 7 and 8 pupils, and to TS Elliott’s ‘The Journey of the Magi,’ read by our Head Boy and Head Girl.

Music always features heavily in our services and this year was no exception with performances by Choir and Brass Group. The real highlight however, was a spellbinding performance of Fleet Foxes’ ‘White Winter Hymnal,’ performed a cappella by Daisy Allen, Sophie Burn, Charlotte Gregory, Megan Preece and Megan Waite. The audience, each time, could not contain their applause; this was usually reserved exclusively for the end the service. The girls arranged the performance entirely themselves, singing in five parts and employing intricate body-percussion throughout. It was wonderful to see such committed and self-motivated pupils, their hard work paid off as they were also asked to perform in the Sixth Form Awards Evening and Christmas Concert the preceding two nights - a highlight both nights.

The services closed with a rousing performance by the whole congregation of ‘The Yorkshire Wassail’, something that has become a tradition in recent years.

Many of the musical elements of the services were on show the previous evening in the Christmas Concert. An annual fixture in the calendar, organised by the dedicated Performing Arts team, it is a wonderful opportunity to perform for the wider school community to round off an excellent Winter term.

This year featured a plethora of performances such as: vocal solos, duets, brass and string ensembles, folk group and orchestra. The Concert got off to a roaring start with a performance of Slade’s Christmas classic ‘Merry Christmas Everybody,’ performed with gusto by the entire Year 10 GCSE music class (plus a few staff getting in to the festive spirit). Our staff showed hidden musical talents performing, as small chamber choir, at version of Traditional carol ‘Hail Chime On.’

Choir reconvened following the School musical and in just three short weeks preparation delivered two outstanding performances: ‘Christmas Star,’ from Home Alone 2, and traditional French Carol ‘I’ll Est Ne, Le Divin Enfant.’ The latter was sung in both French and English and featured a solo French verse from Sophie Burn.

The grand finale was a true celebration of the Performing Arts exploits of the term; Chamber Orchestra flanked by cast members from Oklahoma! performed the ‘Overture’ from the show. The ‘Overture’ took us on a whistle stop of tour of the greatest hits of the musical. The sound of ‘The Farmer and the Cowman,’ ‘Into My Dreams,’ and others echoing around the church was truly wonderful way to end both the concert and a successful term.

Deputy Mayor, Councillor Sykes, gave a vote of thanks to all involved on behalf of the town council and the community of Pocklington.