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Belvedere Annual Musical Evening 2019

Belvedere Annual Musical Evening 2019

By Bláth McDonnell, Rhetoric Parent

The Musical Evening took place Friday, May 3rd, 2019

What a great evening! The audience was seduced from the start with the wonderful chamber choir singing a preview of what was in store (together with sung safety announcements and banter!) all delivered in perfect harmony to the tune of “Tonight” from West Side Story.  These boys set the scene beautifully for what was to come - an eclectic mix of music and song, showcasing the finest of talent from the Belvedere boys. The three MCs did a wonderful job of introducing all the acts and telling us a little bit about themselves too, managing to link all of the different acts while also playing instruments themselves.

The various choirs (Junior, Senior and Chamber) treated us to a great mix of music, ranging from an Ave Maria to a rap song and just about everything in between. It was no surprise to hear that these groups did so well at the recent Wesley Interschools Music Festival. They all sang beautifully and with such emotion and conviction, it was obvious that the boys all really enjoy performing at this level.

The instrumental ensembles (Symphonic Wind Band, Orchestra, Trad Band, Jazz Band and Chamber groups) all wowed with their impressive performances ranging from funk to jigs to concertos, and the enjoyment was written all over their faces. The Orchestra in particular has had such a good year with a memorable performance in the IAYO Showcase in the National Concert Hall in February and their winning performance at the Wesley Interschools Festival in March. What great opportunities for our boys to play at this level.

All of these choral and instrumental ensembles produce incredible results even though the rehearsals are squeezed in at 8am in the morning and/or in the late afternoon after a long school day. The commitment shown by the boys and staff really produces some sort of alchemy and the magic kept us all enthralled for the evening. These boys probably have no idea how fortunate they are to attend a school where music is valued so highly and supported so well. The leadership shown by the staff involved is astonishing, they are so generous with their time, energy, commitment and enthusiasm, and the resulting performances are such a credit to everyone involved. The obvious affection between the boys and their music teachers and mentors is also something joyful to behold.

The soloists were amazing. These are the elite athletes of the Musical Evening. The level of excellence displayed is the product of much solitary hard work and grind. These boys work hard at what they love and it was pure pleasure to listen to them. They are also remarkable in their humility, there was no evidence of prima donna behaviour, they just got up and did what they do.

The whole production was so slick and professional. There were chairs and music stands, microphones and trailing cables, valuable instruments and hordes of teenage boys – what could possibly go wrong? The boys moved themselves and their instruments silently on and off stage with no drama, again such an impressive thing to behold, and a credit to the boys and to the production team. The concert ran for three hours and twenty minutes but it’s fair to say that the audience could have stayed for another hour.

I write this with some sadness as the Musical Evening this weekend marks another ‘last’ for our family as our son does the Leaving Cert in a few weeks, and his Belvedere journey is almost over.  He came to the school in 2013 with no particular interest in music but the spark that was ignited in first year with the Wind Band Programme has become a flame that has burned brightly throughout his time here and will hopefully continue to do so in the future.

To view the full photo gallery, please click HERE.

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