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Director of Music Report for TWBS – Week 3 - Sep 23, 2021

It is feeling like we are fully back to normal now and this week has flown by. The usual bands, choirs & orchestras have run, and we are seeing more students coming along. The real message to any student who plays an instrument is – join a group, you will love it!


Rehearsals are all focused on Open Evening at the moment, and we are looking forward to providing music for this important event but we also have the Autumn concert in sight, and we are preparing music for the evening. The concert is taking place on Thursday 21st October, and it will be out first large-scale concert of the year. It will be packed full of every ensemble for across The Windsor Boys School & Windsor Girls School. Information about tickets will be released next week.


Instrumental lessons are beginning to pick up and we have students learning a full range of instruments. There has been a lot of interest in Guitar & Drums and several students have started to learn saxophone, trombone & trumpet. We are keen to keep encouraging students to try instruments.


Year 9 are settling in well and lessons this week have focused on drum-kits. Students have learnt how to create their own drumbeats and we look forward to developing this into a composition. GCSE Music has started well and students are already showing that they are keen to get back to work!  A-Level students are back in the swing of musical analysis and composition. I am so proud of the fact that we have so many students wanting to study music and work hard in lessons.


On Sunday 19th we had our first Little Mermaid Weekend session and 75 students turned up to sing and dance. We worked on “Under the Sea” and it was impossible not to smile during rehearsals. We came up with dance moves, rehearsed the harmonies and worked in teams to put the song together. I can’t wait to share it with you at the end of November.


On Sunday evening I was part of a Windsor Festival event at The Old Court with Kadiatu Kanneh-Mason. She is the mother of seven classical musicians, one of whom, Sheku Kanneh-Mason, performed at the royal wedding. Her story of raising black children to become classical musicians was inspiring. She overcame racism and made huge sacrifices for her children. It was a real privilege to interview her and hear from two of her children who played violin & piano. Year 12 students came along to her the interview and were inspired to put their all into their music.

This weekend I am speaking at a national music conference in London, and I am always so proud to tell others about music in Windsor. TWBS Music really is special and unique, and I am indebted to all the students who have been involved in music this week alone!


And so, we look ahead to Open Evening, concerts and Mermaids! I am hoping to see more students signing up for instrumental lessons and more coming along to rehearsals! The future is very bright indeed and I am so glad to be back.


Mr J. Manwaring
Director of Music – Windsor Learning Partnership