King Edward's Music

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

Instrumental Evening – woodwind and brass

Monday, 6 November at 1800

Ruddock Performing Arts Centre

An informal concert given by woodwind and brass players from King Edward’s School and King Edward VI High School for Girls.

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

This recital is presented jointly with King Edward VI High School for Girls

 

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Lunchtime Recital Last Week

Thursday, 2 November at 13.10
Ruddock Performing Arts Centre

Arun Ramanathan, violin
Charlotte Chapman, oboe
Nathan Cornish, trombone

works by Elgar, Telemann, Rubbra, Šulek and Pryor

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

This recital is presented jointly with King Edward VI High School for Girls

 

A musical afternoon for the Shells of King Edward’s School.

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Tom Redmond working with our Shells

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Margaret Cookhorn working with our Shells

Friday, 3 November 2017
Ruddock Performing Arts Centre

Adam Romer, viola
Margaret Cookhorn, bassoon and contra-bassoon
Tom Redmond, horn

As a musician, I was delighted to find out that representatives of the CBSO would be coming to see us! When I was younger, I saw people from the CBSO on YouTube and they helped me massively with improving as a bassoonist. I enjoyed seeing the viola, the French horn and the bassoon and finding more about each of the instruments. I particularly enjoyed the bassoon duet as well as the tunes that we all knew on the French horn and some amazing pieces on the viola that had a lot of emotions – one moment  happy, the next sad. It was great to explore how the French horn turned from a hunter’s horn to something as complicated as it is now and how the colour impacts the sound, how the bassoon and the contrabassoon can go really low and quite high as well and also how the viola can be plucked and bowed. I also learnt how all instruments make their sound: vibration, and how they make it, from reeds to bows to mouth buzzes. It was a really interesting and hard to beat Friday afternoon activity!

Ben Woodward (Shell)

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

Duet in F sharp for two bassoons by Christopher Churcher

 

On Friday, 3 November, the first performance was given of Upper Middle Christopher Churcher’s Duet in F sharp for two bassoons. The performers were Margaret Cookhorn, principal contra-bassoonist of the CBSO and Christopher himself.

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

A trip to Symphony Hall



Thursday, 12 October 2017 at 19.30
Symphony Hall, Birmingham

Mariinsky Orchestra
Valery Gergiev, conductor
Denis Matsuev, piano

Programme:

Rimsky-Korsakov – Suite from the Golden Cockerel
Prokofiev – Piano Concerto no.2
Rachmaninov – Symphonic Dances op.45

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

Performers’ Platform


Tuesday, 10 October 2017 at 18.30
Ruddock Performing Arts Centre

James Cleasby, clarinet
Nikita Jain, bassoon
Daniel Li, viola
Adam Mukoon, violin
Junias Wong, violin
Jessie Zhao, piano
Rick Zheng, cello

and a String Quartet who will perform a movement of Beethoven’s quartet op.18, no.3

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

This concert is presented jointly with King Edward VI High School for Girls

From the Instrumental Evening on Monday

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

The concert is presented jointly with King Edward VI High School for Girls

 

From AP100 launch

On 18th September, our AP100 ensemble performed during the launch of the King Edward’s School’s accessibility campaign in a bid to secure permanent need-blind admission to the school.

The programme was:

Arcangelo Corelli (1653-1713): Suite for string orchestra
i. Sarabanda
ii. Giga
iii. Bardinerie

Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706): Canon

Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971): Concerto in D
i. Vivace
ii. ARIOSO: Andantino
iii. RONDO: Allegro

The Miss Margaret Davis Memorial Recital


Thursday, 28 September 2017 at 13.10

Ruddock Performing Arts Centre

Alice Beardmore, violin
Eugene Toso, cello
Lauren Zhang, piano

works by Grieg, Elgar, Shostakovich and Chopin

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

This recital is presented jointly with King Edward VI High School for Girls

 

King Edward’s School at the first night of the BBC Proms

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: performances in the BBC Promenade concerts.

Tom Coult: St John’s Dance (BBC commission: world premiere)
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Concerto No 3 in C minor
John Adams: Harmonium

Igor Levit, piano
BBC Proms Youth Choir
BBC Symphony Chorus
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Edward Gardner, conductor

Richard Franklin, Haine Hock, Abhinav Jain, David Millross, and former King Edward’s boys sing Adams’s extra-ordinary Harmonium as part of the Proms Youth Choir in the first night of the Proms. The performance is a celebration of John Adams’s seventieth birthday this year.

The concert is in the Royal Albert Hall, and will be broadcast on BBC television and radio. You can read more on the BBC Proms website.

 

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

Our Shell performers

At the end of their first academic year at King Edward’s, it’s great to celebrate all the musical things our Shells (year 7) have achieved, and all that is to come. Here are some photographs of our Shells in performance, in rehearsal, or at Clef Club.

Music Department at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Shell performers

Music Department at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Clef Club

Music Department at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Shell performers

Music Department at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Shell performers

Music Department at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Shell performers

Music Department at King Edward's School, Birmingham: Shell performers

 

 

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

 

From the Jazz Evening on 25 June

 

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

The concert is presented jointly with King Edward VI High School for Girls

 

Jazz Evening

The 2017 Jazz Evening was held on Sunday, 25 June. Senior Swing Band was joined once more by Joe Thompson and Robert Rickenberg for workshops and performances.

An old boy of the school, Joe is house pianist at the Ivy in London, and brought to King Edward’s his characteristic blend of wit and musicianship. You can read more about him at: www.joethompson.london.

Our soloists included Lily Gain, Eva Neville, Molly Thompson, Satish Vaze, Altay Gardiner, Matt Madden, and Nathan Cornish.

Romany Wood

It is a year since our performance of ‘Romany Wood.’ Led by King Edward’s School, this project connected pupils from 15 diverse schools, making it possible for the 800 participating children to perform together on-stage in Birmingham’s Symphony Hall, raising money for Birmingham Children’s Hospital. A cheque for £1323.50 was presented this term by the Chief Master to Tanita Mistry of the hospital, supporting the wonderful work done there.

You can see a gallery of Mr. Ash’s photographs documenting the Romany Wood project here:

http://www.davidashphotography.org/Galleries/King-Edwards/Music/Romany-Wood

Performers’ Platform


Tuesday, 6 June 2017 at 18.30
Ruddock Performing Arts Centre

Bryan Chang, violin
Angie Qiao, piano
Enoch Cheung, violin
Michael Luo, piano
Ivy Lau, violin
James Corcoran, piano

works by Saint-Saëns, Mozart, Fauré and Haydn

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham

This concert is presented jointly with King Edward VI High School for Girls

Players from the CBSO record the Fifths’ string quartets.

Music is, depressingly, becoming less prevalent in the curriculum in this day and age. Yet, contrary to popular belief, I have concluded that the reason for this isn’t the content of the course itself, but the students who choose to take it. Sometimes I struggle to understand how Dr Leigh has the motivation to teach us, let alone spend more time with us than the bare minimum. Yet, through his will and determination, he fearlessly led our ragtag crew into the expanse of the Ruddock Hall on an especially dreary Friday afternoon.

Now, if I am giving the impression of reluctance thus far, I wish to say that this was an especially exciting day, for we were to present our ‘serial’ compositions to a select group of musicians (from City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the Dante Quartet) consisting Shulah Oliver, Zhiko Georgiev, Adam Romer, and Richard Jenkinson), so we could experience our IGCSE compositions realised in full surround-sound audio, contrary to the pained wailing of a so-called ‘violin’ that Sibelius does its utmost to render.

At this point I should mention the nature of serialism (No, not Special K and the like), as I am sure the introduction of this technical language has caught many of you off guard. I believe the art of serialism can be best summarised by a quote from Schoenberg, the founding father of serialism himself:

‘My music is not lovely.’

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: string quartet recordings by CBSO

Unlovely music

In layman’s terms, serialism is designed to sound pretty rubbish. One can go into the joy of retrogrades, rows, combinatoriality, and inversions, but essentially serialism is crafted around a foundation of a twelve-tone scale, and doesn’t follow the conventions of traditional western harmony, resulting in something that sounds a ‘bit dodgy’, to use the words of Jonnie. Yet Schoenburg also said:

‘My work should be judged as it enters the ears and heads of listeners, not as it is described to the eyes of readers.’

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: string quartet recordings by CBSO

Fragile and unreliable

So, I humbly concede to the fragility and unreliability of words, and move on to the topic of the music itself. Our class, being as it is, showed serious apprehension to the dea of purposely bad music, however on the realisation that we were able to ‘bung any old note in and they can’t criticise it’, we discovered a newfound glee at the idea of having one fewer thing to think about when composing.

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: string quartet recordings by CBSO

Newfound glee

And so we presented our crisp copies featuring, but not limited to:

“Alas, my teapot has run off with a spoon. (A Lament of Youth)” by Nathan Cornish
“O why does my toenail itch so?” by Isaac Elliot
“No! Layers, Onions have layers!” by Jonnie Green

And prayed that these fine players would be able to work their way around our indiscernible blotches. Thankfully, despite Jonnie’s initial worries that they may not have a full grasp of dotted rhythms, they realised our work with aplomb, and we left feeling fulfilled, enriched, and most definitely tired.

Matthew Igoe, Fifths

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: string quartet recordings by CBSO Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: string quartet recordings by CBSO

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham: string quartet recordings by CBSO

Music at King Edward's School, Birmingham