Perse and primary pupils join forces for marvellous musical Voyage

Choirs from The Perse and local primary schools went on magical musical journey with their performances of The Voyage.

Singers from the Upper and Prep teamed up with groups from St Alban’s Catholic, The Bellbird, St Paul’s CofE and Teversham Primary Schools across two shows at West Road Concert Hall.

Together with the power of live musicians, around 200 singers brought the moving and evocative piece by Bob Chilcott and Charles Bennett to life.

Their work reflected on life’s journey from young to old and the audience included visitors from Cherry Hinton Care Home, while proceeds from the concerts were given to Age UK.

Perse Director of Music said: “Each concert had a positive, feelgood vibe. Every pupil will have come out of it with a sense of personal pride in what they achieved, but also pride as a collective whole at creating this huge sound in such a brilliant venue as well.

The Voyage is a piece of music that people can get a lot out of. It’s exhilarating, but it’s also an emotional and moving piece with the message that whatever storm life throws at you, you’re not alone.

“There were some other lovely little touches to the day. The artworks from Years 5 and 6 created in response to the text were projected on to the backdrop and we were lucky enough to have the poet Charles Bennett with us. He did a heartfelt speech to our choirs on the genesis of the piece.”

The shows were the result of a Perse community partnerships project, following on from the success of last year’s O Fortuna show at Saffron Hall, which saw choirs from the Upper, Prep, St Alban’s and The Bellbird perform Orff’s Carmina Burana.

Mr Wingfield said: “Immediately after O Fortuna, we wanted to see how we could get even more members of the community involved.

“As well as working with more primary schools, we wanted to engage with members of our local care homes with the idea of bringing young and old together to think about the themes of The Voyage.

“Our Sixth Form music mentors have been going into two of the schools and members of Perse staff have been meeting with the other schools and conducting visits to the local care home.

“For our students, it was a wonderful chance for them to experience what it’s like to be on the other side of the classroom setting and leading the lessons.

“I think they found it quite nerve-racking at first, but the pupils they were working with were so engaged from the off that it was easy for them to get into a constructive rhythm.”


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