Clifton High hosted its inaugural Festival of Music, Performance and Arts last month

Principally, Clifton High is a school for parents who want their child’s emotional and personal development to be given the same level of importance as their academic achievements. The School allows pupils to ‘realise individual brilliance’, with enrichment opportunities available in the fields of sport, music and drama and over 100 extra-curricular clubs available to pupils throughout the School. 

In October 2019 Clifton High hosted its inaugural Festival of Music, Performance and Arts. The highly ambitious and novel week of activities for pupils and families featured workshops and events to showcase and celebrate the creative arts within the School community. The High School was privileged to host a number of distinguished guests during the week; these included the Docklands Sinfonia Orchestra, who worked with pupils on a variety of projects, including this year’s School Production of West Side Story at the Redgrave Theatre. Further highlights included Nursery-Year 6 children working with the Sinfonia and professional illustrator James Mayhew in showcases of The Four Seasons; Bucket Drumming Workshops led by Rob Farrer, Percussion Co-ordinator at the Junior Guildhall School of Music and Drama; a lecture on the Art of Storytelling by the BBC Natural History Unit’s Creative Director, Mike Gunton; a very special performance of the award-winning Caretaker’s Guide to the Orchestra by Jeremy Holland-Smith (the Festival’s curator), which Junior School children, along with invited local primary schools, attended and a Finale concert at the Cathedral bringing a fitting conclusion to the Festival; showcasing a week of creativity and performance, guests were left moved and inspired by the confidence, talent and focus displayed by pupils. Visiting specialists agreed that the collaboration was of mutual benefit, each were motivated by one another. 

Dr Alison Neill, Head of School said, ‘Creating and sharing in performance and music to this standard has been extra-ordinary – quite remarkable. To work with consummate professionals who embody sheer pleasure and fulfilment in what they do has been an absolute privilege’.