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Duncan House | Posted 20.02.2017

Soft Song 2017

Soft Song is the antithesis of Fun Song. Of course, that is not to say that it isn’t fun, rather that the criteria of the competition are about the quality of singing and communication. There is not a year that goes by where the girls do not exceed my expectations (to quote a well-loved School aim) and last night was no exception. Each year, the students choose a song and arrange it for their whole House including the accompaniment, solos, harmonies and chorus work. It is an inclusive and celebratory night where our girls truly enjoy making music with each other and for that reason, it is one of my personal annual highlights.

This year our judge was Shelley Ambury. Shelley is currently Head of Learning for the government initiative ‘Sing Up’, a fantastic organisation which supports and promotes singing in primary and secondary education. As a vocalist she has had a rich career performing with many famous names and at venues such ‘Ronnie Scott’s’ in London but, perhaps most interesting of all, is that Shelley was an A Level Music teacher to our very own Dr Passmore. Our warmest thanks go to Shelley for providing the girls with such expert and detailed feedback.

School House began this year with a heartfelt rendition of ‘Stand by Me’ (Ben E King) which would not have been complete without the infamous bass line provided by Amy Coates on the double bass. Garry followed with ‘Imagine’ (Lennon) complete with choral counter-melodies and immaculate intonation. Duncan sang their arrangement of Mika’s ‘Happy Ending’ which Shelley commended for its ‘spine tingling’ arrangement. Pitlochry performed a robust rendition of ‘We are Young’ by FUN followed by a contrasting performance of ‘People Help the People’ by Birdy from QM Hall, commended for its sensitivity and choral blend. Finally St Aidan’s took us back to the heady heights of the nineties with Backstreet Boys ‘I Want it that Way’.

Congratulations go to all the girls on their stellar performances and of course, extra kudos must got to Duncan House for being crowned our 2017 winners. Our judge left saying that she was looking forward to feeling ‘warm and fuzzy’ on the cold journey back to Gateshead and I think that really does say it all.

by Dr Horseman.

1st place: Duncan singing ‘Happy Ending’ by Mika

2nd place: QM Hall singing ‘People Help the People’ by Birdy

3rd place: Garry singing ‘Imagine’ by John Lennon

4th place: Pitlochry singing ‘We are Young’ by FUN

5th place: School singing ‘Stand by Me’ by Ben E King

6th place: St Aidan’s singing ‘I Want it that Way’ by Backstreet Boys