Wandsworth Music Blog – A Brighter Sound 2023
A Brighter Sound 2023 – The Royal Albert Hall, 28 March 2023
3 years on since the COVID pandemic resulted in the cancellation of our debut concert at the Royal Albert Hall, the day finally came for 1,650 fabulous young musicians from Wandsworth to perform at one of the world’s most iconic concert venues!
A Brighter Sound 2023 celebrated partnership and collaboration – bringing together 33 Wandsworth Schools and pupils from the Wandsworth Music Academy. The performances were supported by inspirational musicians from our partner organisations, the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the National Opera Studio.
The show opened with a long held ambition; to bring together multiple secondary schools to collaborate on a musical theatre performance. More than 200 musicians joined forces to present a medley of songs from Les Misérables, which ended in a stunning rendition of One Day More!
We were delighted to present the world premiere of This World of Ours, an original composition based on the theme of climate change. This World of Ours was created and performed by pupils from Nightingale Community Academy, Oak Lodge School, Garratt Park School, Paddock School and Graveney School. It was a real joy to see all the pupils perform with such excitement, energy and professionalism. The project was delivered in partnership with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and kindly supported by the Wandsworth Grant Fund, Northern Trust and the Nugee Foundation.
Burntwood Chamber Choir and Dance Department performed the intimate story of Killing Me Softly, interpreted by solo dancers, followed by the complex and interweaving lines of Monteverdi’s Surge Propera, one of his earliest pieces published in 1582.
The massed whole class brass, featuring 200 brass players from our whole class ensemble tuition programme brought the first half to a close with a throwback to the 90’s! The performances of No Limit and Sky Full of Stars brought the party vibe to the Royal Albert Hall and the sold out audience to their feet!
The second half opened with the rousing voices of the 300 strong Wandsworth Secondary Choir, accompanied by the Wandsworth Philharmonic Orchestra performing Handel’s Zadok the Priest and Sam Cooke’s A Change is Gonna Come. Congratulations to Zach, Selina, & Macy, soloists in A Change is Gonna Come, who sang with such soulful and heartfelt expression.
Candice Graver, member of the Wandsworth Youth Council was then the featured piano soloist in Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue performed by the Wandsworth Philharmonic Orchestra. Huge congratulations to Candice and Si Yu (clarinet solo) who performed with great professionalism, musicality and flair!
The massed voices of the 1,000 strong primary choir then brought the Royal Albert Hall to life with songs from past and present, including Spice Up Your Life, A Million Dreams and a medley of Elton John classics. The children sang their hearts out and it was a real pleasure to see a performance filled with such fun, energy and joy!
With such high quality music on display, the evening flew by and before we knew it, it was time for the finale! The evening was brought to a close with more than 1,500 performers joining forces to sing, play and dance the finale from the hit musical Singing in the Rain.
What a night it was – certainly one we, and all the young performers will never forget! We can’t wait to be back in 2025!
Wandsworth Music would like to say a huge congratulations to every single young musician who took part and a huge thank you to all teachers and parents for their ongoing support and hard work.
Make sure you purchase your recording of the concert to relive what was an outstanding night of music overflowing with such special memories!
Click Here to Buy: https://bsfv.co.uk/shop/
“That was off the scale! My goodness, what an evening. I can’t begin to fathom how you put all that together but the organisation, skill, talent and vision was quite extraordinary. Our children in Wandsworth are deeply privileged to have such an amazing service available to them and I hope that the experience of taking part, and witnesses so many different genres in such an iconic building, will stay with them for life.”
“We are so thrilled that our daughter has had the chance to participate in such an amazing opportunity as performing at the Royal Albert Hall. With your support and enthusiasm she took the whole thing confidently in her stride and enjoyed every minute of it – at the age of 10!! Where can it go from here?”
“HUGE congratulations for an extraordinary concert last night! Great music, singing and dance – and it was special that you included the world premiere of the Wandsworth Anthem with the special school children composing and performing with others!”
Cllr Jeremy Ambache, Mayor of Wandsworth
“Every aspect of the evening was perfect. A huge collective effort, a brilliant, varied programme, amazing team-work across all the teaching staff, children and young people along with shining talented individual performers. Everything was engineered by you both perfectly and amazingly. The concert had pace and total commitment from everyone. The Hall was full – you must be very proud – and everyone wondered where the time had gone and when it was all over. We all wanted more.”
David Sulkin OBE – Director of Artistic Development, National Opera Studio
“It was truly inspiring seeing hundreds of talented young musicians take to the RAH stage, performing with such passion and confidence. From the glorious sounds of Monteverdi through to the toe-tapping tunes from Les Misérables, it was truly a joyful evening of music making of the highest quality… It was truly an evening to remember and a reminder that there is a bright future for music in this country.”
James Williams – Managing Director, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra