STUDENT singers and musicians at a secondary school showcased their skills alongside professionals at a concert.
Two performances took place yesterday (Wednesday) at Canons High School in Shaldon, Edgware, with a variety of acts including staff bands, virtuoso performances and a vocal girl group.
Head of music Ian Patterson said the concert was inspired to celebrate its musical ‘heritage’ and the progress its various music projects have made by the discovery that late blues singer John ‘Long John’ Baldry was a former pupil of the school.
Mr Patterson said: “We have a choir that we’ve been developing. It’s years seven, eight, nine and some year 10s, so it’s more or less a junior choir.
“We’ve been doing some nice harmonic Christmas songs and we’re doing pop songs like Purple Rain by Prince and Handel’s Messiah and we’re performing with the Steve Glen band with their three songs.
“We’ve had help from Harrow Music Services to organise a young string group, and we’ve got some strong ensembles.”
Steve Glen is a Harrow-based composer who wrote hit songs for the likes of Hot Chocolate and has been volunteering two afternoons a week at the school while Pete Huntington, who is The Who’s recording drummer, and BBC principal trombonist James Casey, both go in to tutor pupils and starred in the concert.
“This was the first time we have reached out to the professional community, and we look to them to mentor and inspire and give our pupils a level to aim for,” said Mr Patterson. The students were being very devoted and they committed long hours after school to rehearse. It took many hours of preparation, so it was a new challenge for them.”