The music department recently held their final Music Scholars’ Concert of the academic year in the beautiful setting of South Hill Park in Bracknell. Built in 1760 as the private residence for William Watts. South Hill Park is now an arts centre with theatre, cinema, recital room and cellar bar and sits in 24 acres of beautifully maintained parkland.
The College’s music scholars once again inspired the audience with their supreme musicianship, professionalism and commitment with a varied programme of solo repertoire. The first half of the concert took place upstairs in the Recital Room overlooking the parkland. First year student Theodore Maher-Williams opened a half of traditional classical repertoire, performing Chopin’s impressive Fantaisie-Impromptu with great panache.
After the interval, the audience migrated downstairs to the Cellar Bar, a room with a more relaxed ambience. Joined by ex-Farnborough music scholars Rod Oughton (Drums and Bass Guitar) and Ralph Wyld (Percussion), the second half was imbued with music from the Jazz idiom, including pieces by Gershwin, Quincy Jones and Bobby Watson, and a composition by second year music scholar Dom Hall. Dom commented, “This concert provided a fantastic opportunity to perform my own composition and more with some incredibly talented students, both present and past. The dedication and skill of my peers has inspired me greatly over the two years on the scholarship programme and this evening marked the culmination of all that hard work.”
First year music scholar Orla Mair summed up the experience by saying, “I had an amazing time performing at South Hill Park! The venue was beautiful and the perfect size for this friendly and intimate concert. I loved the fact that I got the chance to perform with my friends; we were all so supportive of one another, and playing music together has definitely created strong friendships which we will never forget.”
After the concert Harry White, Curriculum Manager of musical performance praised the students: “This was an unusual and exciting venture, mixing up genres and locations in what proved to be a fantastically innovative and entertaining evening. It was especially poignant to hear this current group of scholars performing for the last time. Our second years have grown in confidence, maturity and musicianship and we will miss them greatly. We look forward to the first years continuing their development together, and inspiring a new group of young musicians in a life-changing musical journey here at Farnborough.”