This weekend, members of our school Schola Cantorum and the music department travelled to the historic city of York to perform Haydn’s Creation with some fantastic young people from schools across the country, alongside the world-renowned Gabrieli Consort & Players in York Minster.


This event was part of the Gabrieli ROAR project, led by the brilliant choral director, Mr Paul McCreesh. An intensive schedule of rehearsals on Friday 5th and Saturday 6th November culminated in a professional concert on Saturday evening to a public audience in the awe-inspiring setting of York Minster.


During a busy schedule in York, we also found time to visit England’s oldest living convent and its stunning 18th Century hidden chapel, where the choir sang some plainsong. The Bar Convent is home to the Congregation of Jesus, founded by the Venerable Mary Ward.


Following the magnificent performance of Creation on Saturday night, we attended Mass at St Wilfred’s Church (Oratorian Fathers) on Sunday morning before exploring the Medieval city centre, including sights such as Margaret Clitheroe’s house and the world-famous Shambles – the best-preserved medieval shopping street in Europe.


This incredible experience will live long in the memories of our students, all of whom can be commended for their remarkable commitment and dedication throughout the project.


Hilary L-S and Julia K (Year 10): ‘Schola Cantorum recently had the fantastic opportunity to visit York to perform Haydn’s Creation in York Minster. We sang alongside a collection of other school and community choirs brought together by Paul McCreesh and the Gabrieli ROAR project. The concert featured a professional orchestra of the Gabrieli Players and three amazing vocal soloists.’


‘We were also able to visit the Bar Convent to learn about the life of Margaret Clitheroe, one of our house saints and attend Holy Mass at St Wilfred’s Church. On the last day of our residential trip, we were able to visit the Shambles and take in the medieval architecture which evoked images of Diagon Alley from the Harry Potter films.’