October 2023

Students participate in orchestral masterclass with Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra

On Friday 13 October, our talented string musicians had the fantastic opportunity to take part in a truly inspiring partnership event led by Miranda Walton, Community Outreach Leader for Oxford Philharmonic Orchestra alongside several additional professional OPO musicians.

60 students from six local secondary schools – including Larkmead, Didcot Girls, Wallingford, Faringdon Community College and Cherwell schools – attended the event and were given the opportunity to experience a variety of music, extend their understanding of orchestral playing and benefit from guidance from professional string players to help them with their instrumental technique.

The theme of the project was ‘mystic and magic’ and students spent the day preparing four musical pieces for a concert to be performed at the end of the day to parents, staff and other visitors. The four pieces were Lin-Manuel Miranda’s ‘We don’t talk about Bruno’; Tchaikovsky’s ‘Swan Lake’; Offenbach’s ‘Can-Can’; and ‘Hogwarts March’ by Patrick Doyle.

Throughout the day students spent time rehearsing in both a large ensemble group and in smaller subgroups. This was a great chance to talk to students from other schools and experience collaborative working styles. The final performance to parents at the end of the day was absolutely breathtaking, and it was incredible to see the progress that had been made since the start of the day.

Supporting staff from Wallingford School said: “It was a fabulous day, and our students had a fantastic experience. We will be continuing to use the music to teach other students when we return to school”.

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