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Trent College was hit by a force of inspiration this week as we hosted the international award-winning a cappella vocal group Voces8. The day was an unforgettable experience and will last long in the memory of all involved.
In the morning, the group worked with all the pupils of Year 8, leading vocal games and exercises and creating improvised pieces with them. Year 8 ended their session by singing a multi-layered performance of Jessie-J’s Price Tag along with Voces8.
The afternoon session belonged to Schola Cantorum. Voces8 led an extensive vocal training session focusing on derestriction, ensemble and performance skills. Over the course of three hours the change in our students was clear to see. Their performance improved tremendously and their confidence grew as they bonded more strongly as a group.
In the evening, Voces8 gave a breath-taking performance in the May Hall. The entire performance was highly polished and technically flawless, but most of all enormous fun and completely compelling. The programme ranged from renaissance polyphonic church music to the music of Freddie Mercury and Queen. With so many outstanding moments it is difficult to pick individual high points: their rendition of Only You by the Flying Pickets was beautiful; their medley of opera tunes was hilarious; their performances of early classical pieces were so well presented that they became instantly clear and understandable to everyone in the audience.
As a testament to the hard work of our students, and the quality of the afternoon workshop, Voces8 included Schola Cantorum in the concert. Our students performed two pieces themselves, as well as being joined by the members of Voces8 to perform The Bluebird by Charles Stanford together.
Even students who had not been able to make it to the concert had heard how good it was and came along afterwards to see the group who were chatting with the audience and signing autographs.