World premiere of choral piece unveiled at Senior School Christmas Concert

World premiere of choral piece unveiled at Senior School Christmas Concert

The highlight of the Senior School Christmas Concert was the finale item, which was the world premiere of a choral piece by internationally acclaimed composer Ēriks Ešenvalds. The piece was commissioned to celebrate the School's 120th anniversary.

Ēriks wrote a bespoke setting of the medieval text ‘There is no Rose’ for the two Senior School choirs, Allegro and Cantore.

The song was extremely well received and the students relished the challenge of performing a brand new piece for double choir.

The piece was commissioned by the St Mary’s Music department, using a generous donation from the St Mary's PTA, and forms part of the celebrations of the School’s 120th anniversary. Other celebrations have included a Welcome Tea for the whole school, a Wine Tasting to choose a 120th anniversary wine, and a Christmas pudding stir up, which created some special 120th Christmas puddings. The stir up also raised money for local Cambridge charity Blue Smile, which provides counselling for children in need of additional support.

In total over 125 students from across the Senior School took part in the spectacular Christmas concert at the Cambridge University Concert Hall.

Students delivered a feast of diverse repertoire, from classical to pop and jazz, with some sacred music appropriate for the advent period alongside secular hits and toe-tapping crowd-pleasers.

Some of the more advanced musicians in Years 11 and 13 performed solos, and the audience were treated to a 'teaser' (the song 'Funny Honey') performed by members of the company from the School's forthcoming musical 'Chicago' (High School Edition). 

Emma Whittley, the St Mary’s Alumnae Relations Officer and member of the School’s PTA, commented: “Well done to the girls for all their hard work in preparing for the concert, and thank you to Ēriks for creating such a wonderful choral piece. It makes a fantastic addition to the School’s 120th anniversary celebrations”.