On Thursday 21st November we were treated to the annual St Cecilia concert in the magnificent Abbey Church. It was certainly an exhilarating evening, with choral and instrumental music of outstanding quality.

After a rousing performance of Henry VIII’s Pastime with Good Company from the brass group, directed by Mr Simon Jones, the Schola Cantorum assembled on the steps of the high altar to give a polished and shapely performance of Dvořák’s lyrical Mass in D.

Harry Ross (B16) joined 10 choristers from the home team to sing the various solos, accompanied by organist Stephen Bell and directed by Mr McNamara. The concert concluded with a performance of Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto, performed by Upper Sixth Former Joanna Doliwa, accompanied by the Downside School Orchestra under Mr McNamara’s direction.

Joanna’s technical virtuosity and deeply intuitive musicality combined to give a sparkling performance that was full of detail, poetry and fun, and which rightly earned a spontaneous standing ovation. She was handsomely supported by the orchestra which responded with commitment and vigour to echo Joanna’s interpretation of Mendelssohn’s demanding score.

If you are interested in a Music or Choral Scholarship, we have extended our deadline for 11+ and 13+ Scholarship applications for 2020 to 7th January 2020. For more information, please click here.