Centenary Concert at the Bridgewater Hall
An expectant hush fell as I stepped onto the stage of the Bridgewater Hall along with the other members of the First Orchestra. Altrincham Grammar School for Girls’ Centenary Concert had begun. Since January, we had worked to make the evening of 27th April 2010 an occasion to remember. And remember it, everybody involved most certainly will.
The programme was a rich and varied one. As a flautist and choir member, personal highlights included Saint-Saëns’ “Carnival of the Animals” with two Steinway pianos and a beautiful cello solo. It was something truly special to hear the Senior choir sing “Like a Singing Bird” by Bob Chilcott with all of Years 7 and 8 on the lower part and to participate in a World Première of Sasha Johnson-Manning’s “A Time For Peace” on the same evening. Not only this, but the school’s new hymn was also played with the incredible Bridgewater Hall organ. Others will remember most fondly how the Dance Performance Group commemorated the Centenary with “Dancing through the Decades”, or how the String Orchestra gave a memorable performance of “A-roving” from Suite for Strings by Warlock. Many will be proudest of how the Jazz Band played “How High the Moon”, “In the Mood” and accompanied 400 or so Year 7 and 8 pupils in a special arrangement of “It Don’t Mean a Thing if it ain’t got that Sing, Sing, Sing”. Indeed, the Year 11 Drama based on school storied from 100 years ago may be a favourite for others.
What everyone will agree on is that AGGS’ Centenary Concert, compèred by none other than Gordon Burns, was a very special evening. The privilege of performing such wonderful material, to commemorate such a prestigious occasion, in such an awe-inspiring venue, was certainly an experience I will never forget.