Choirs from Danehill Primary School, Holy Trinity in Cuckfield, Lindfield Primary School and St Peter’s, Ardingly, with their hosts Ardingly College, put on a wonderful concert for their parents in a packed College Chapel.
Barney Smith, musical director of VOCES8, Ardingly’s Choral Ensemble in Residence, said: “We have really enjoyed working with five extremely talented choirs over the past couple of days. All of us at VOCES8 had a wonderful education in music and we are glad to be able to give that back.”
The concert started with Ardingly’s Prep School Choir performing Laudamus Te from Vivaldi’s Gloria and then a very young choir from St Peter’s met the challenge of the difficult Canoe Song.
Danehill sang the African Souallé and Holy Trinity a version of Believe. Finally the large choir from Lindfield did a medley of songs from The Sound of Music, complete with actions.
Lola Paterson, aged nine, from Lindfield Primary said: “I enjoyed it when Emily and Chris from VOCES8 came into our school and taught us a song and then we sang it at Ardingly. It was really good fun.”
Lindfield parent Sangeeta MacGregor added, after the combined choirs had sung Rutter’s Irish Blessing, “The concert was amazing and such a lovely opportunity for the children to sing in this environment – magical.”
The audience was also treated to several numbers performed a capella by VOCES8 and the finale, Twist and Shout, had everyone joining in with the chorus and attempting a hand jive.
Judith Rae from Danehill Primary School summed up how much the VOCES8’ choral education programme means to her school: “Our children gained a huge amount from both days. They really loved the workshop at our own school and were highly impressed with the other choirs, especially the Ardingly Choir.
“Ours is a new choir so we have no tradition to build on and the children have never even seen other choirs before. It was only a month ago that one asked me, ‘What is a choir?’ Now he knows! It was a complete revelation to them all and an extremely valuable learning experience.”