After a three year wait, 2018 was the year when the weather was fine enough for our annual Summer Concert to be held outdoors again on the theatre patio, an ideal natural stage on a lovely summer’s evening. 84 children, nearly half of the children in the main school, were involved in the concert, from Years 3 to 8.
Joseph B set the scene splendidly with his piano improvisations as the audience was arriving. The concert then began with the Chamber Orchestra playing a lively rendition of the Liberty Bell March. The items on the programme were very varied, and included the Flute Quintet, String Quartet and Trio, Saxophone Ensemble, Woodwind Trio, Cello Ensemble and two Brass Ensembles. The Percussion Ensemble’s catchy piece played on boomwhackers was new this year and a great success. The larger ensembles also had their moments: the Training Orchestra kept the audience awake with Haydn’s ‘Surprise Symphony’ and the Junior Wind Band gave two very slick performances.
Singing is very popular at Packwood and three different choirs performed at the concert. The Junior Chamber Choir, a selective choir from Years 3-5, sang two fabulous contrasting pieces. The audience will be unlikely to forget Gethin H’s accompanying actions – and facial expressions – to the song ‘It’s in my desk’, complete with untidy desk! The senior Boys’ and Girls’ Choirs had each chosen and rehearsed their songs themselves – this year, ‘Mr Blue Sky’ and ‘Four Chords’. A quiet, simple anthem by John Rutter sung by the combined choirs provided an excellent contrast to the pop songs.
As has become traditional, Packwood leavers were invited to perform solo items. Eve L’s singing of ‘Fields of Gold’ was particularly moving, and everyone enjoyed Genevieve B, Lucy C and Liberty C’s song from the popular film ‘The Greatest Showman’. Bassoon, piano and trumpet solos were also on the programme.
The audience was well-entertained and enjoyed picnics in the evening sunshine whilst listening, enhanced by the school Pimms. As the headmaster put it, the concert finished ‘with a bang’, that of very well-timed fireworks to accompany the Chamber Orchestra’s final number, Viva la Vida. A terrific end to another musical year at Packwood.