A unique musical encounter unfolded as the school played host to VOCES8, the globally acclaimed and Grammy-Award nominated British vocal ensemble. The Senior Choir, joined by singers from Westminster School, eagerly embraced the opportunity to harmonise over 60 voices in an exceptional workshop. This was followed by an evening performance, providing a wonderful opportunity to share the joy of music with our entire school community.
Head Chorister, Zech, shares his experience of this special encounter.
‘We had another amazing chance to perform and work with professionals. This time, we had the privilege of having the Grammy-Award nominated British vocal ensemble, VOCES8. Before the concert, VOCES8 had a workshop with the Senior Choir and many old WUS boys who now sing tenor and bass. VOCES8 are excellent at blending their sound into one, and in the workshop, we had to work on blending almost 60 voices into one sound.
We commenced the workshop with some warm-ups, which included some clapping rhythm exercises. These helped us to learn to keep in time with each other and being aware of ourselves and other’s parts. We were taught to really listen to each other, especially important in chamber ensembles. This allowed us to keep together, for example in ‘Underneath the Stars’ without a conductor. The concert was a chance to listen to VOCES8 perform, and also to show off what we had learnt.
Overall, it was a really enjoyable and incredible to work and perform with such a famous group. We are extremely grateful to them for coming in, and to Mrs Thorn and the Music Department for organising this. There are more concerts coming soon, so the Senior Choir is still very busy. The lessons learnt will stick with the members of the choir for as long as we sing!’
This visit not only enriched the musical experience for our pupils but also created lasting memories of collaboration and passion for music.