THE chapel rang to the unusual sound of jazz on Sunday night.
Will Todd’s Mass in Blue was preceded by a thoughtful and polished performance by the AVE girls of John Rutter’s Candlelight Carol.
This was followed by the anthem written for the school by Howard Goodall and John Rutter’s wonderful Gloria, courtesy of the Chapel Choir with David Bridges on the Organ and a professional brass ensemble.
The second half featured Will Todd’s ‘Mass in Blue’, which was an ambitious piece for the Choral Society, and they pulled it off magnificently. They were ably assisted by an excellent band, consisting of the Will Todd Trio (Will Todd – piano, Gareth Hugh-Davies – Bass, Jim Fleeman – drum kit) and a big band of 3 saxes, 2 trumpets and 3 trombones.
It was a huge privilege to have Mr Todd himself at the piano adding his own improvisations on the piano part he had written. The singing was full of enthusiastic energy and splendidly jazzy with the Credo a particular high point. The choir showed their quality too in the quiet and moving Agnus Dei and Sanctus.
Hannah Deasy performed vocal miracles in the solo part and the audience were left gasping in astonishment at her range and power.
The only disappointment of the evening was that this excellent concert played to a chapel which was not full. If you missed it, you missed out.
What an exciting term this has been for singing at Taunton School! At the beginning of September we took the AVE girls to sing at the Wales Millennium Centre, a concert which was streamed live on the internet. Following this we had the huge honour of singing the newly composed Taunton School Anthem conducted by the composer, Howard Goodall and now published by Faber.
We then put on a day of music on the Taunton School Music Stage for the turning on of the Christmas lights in the town centre. 5 pupils won trophies at the Taunton Music Festival and we have two finalists in the Taunton Young Musician of the Year competition. Not forgetting, of course, the chapel services in which the chapel choir have sung and the 11 tea-time concerts and various other events taking place during the term.
Another fabulous term of music!
Mrs Pauline McKay
View more images from the Mass in Blue concert.