Byranston Residential 2017

Every year Bryanston is awaited with tremendous anticipation from both the pupils and tutors, and this year was certainly no disappointment. Nearly 100 students arrived to wonderful weather on the Thursday afternoon and barely had time to unpack before the music making began.

The four day course kicked off with a creative workshop lead by members of Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Stands and sheet music were left to the side as the pupils were encouraged to create music instinctively and freely through improvisation. This was an invigorating start to four days of intense rehearsals of the five ensembles: Orchestra, Wind Band, String Ensemble, Concert Choir and Chamber Choir.

The evenings were a more relaxed affair, with students dispersing into smaller groups to explore a range of styles and ensembles, including a Gospel Choir, smaller String and Wind groups and even a percussion workshop where students composed pieces for short films.

In their free time pupils were free to enjoy Bryanston’s impressive sports facilities and explore the school’s beautiful grounds.

Four days of hard work and good fun were concluded with a lunch with family and friends before a relaxed concert showcasing the ensembles’ efforts. Highlights included a medley of James Bond themes and songs by Burt Bacharach from the Orchestra, a stunning Pizzicato movement from the String Ensemble, an energetic Venezuelan piece from the Wind Band, madrigals to gospel from the Chamber Choir and an arrangement of Danny Boy that left few dry eyes in the audience from the Concert Choir. Not to mention a dramatic evacuation due to an unexpected fire drill!

The brilliant atmosphere and impressive performances after just a few days of rehearsals are no doubt thanks to the tireless efforts of the Staff, and overall the course was a wonderful way to kick off two weeks of holiday for the pupils. Bring on next year!