August 2018

Music students showcase their talents

Battle of the Bands

On Friday 6th July, Withernsea High School was represented for the first time at the ‘Battle of the Bands’ competition at Bridlington Spa.  

Run by the East Riding Music Service, this annual competition offers young people from secondary schools around the county an opportunity to perform on stage in front of an audience at one of the region’s best-known venues.

Withernsea High School’s entry was a five-piece band comprising students from years 7, 8, 10 and 11. The group performed under the name of ‘Half Life’ and featured David Welch on vocals, Michael Ward and Joshua Burdett on guitar, Luke Thorogood on bass and Ben Lindgren on drums.

The group performed two songs - Sweet Dreams, originally by the Eurythmics but performed in the same vein as a later cover by American rock band Marilyn Manson, and the classic rock anthem Sunshine of your Love by the Eric Clapton-led super-group Cream.

The band won praise from the judges for their excellent stage presence, solid playing and confidence. Their overall performance earned them a Silver Award – which was a fantastic achievement for their debut public appearance. 

Judging the contest were freelance musician and music education specialist Sam Dunkley and Gary Hammond – a professional percussionist who is a former touring member of The Beautiful South.

Withernsea High School’s Teacher of Music, Rebecca Croombs, commented: ‘I am so proud of how the boys represented themselves at this event. They were all extremely supportive of not only one another, but also the other bands who were competing from other schools.

They worked extremely hard with their band leader, Issac Draper, from the East Riding Music Service to learn and rehearse these songs during their lunch breaks, which shows real commitment.

To win a Silver Award is the icing on the cake and I know the boys are looking forward to working on their feedback and going back next year stronger and better than ever.

I would like to congratulate them on their success and also say a massive thank you to Issac for his support as well as Ben Croombs from the East Riding Music Service for organising such a fantastic opportunity.'

The Big Sing 

On Wednesday 11th July, 50 of our Year 7 cohort joined approximately 500 other students from East Riding schools to take part in the ‘Big Sing’ at Bridlington Spa.

Now in its seventh year, the annual Big Sing event is an initiative led by the East Riding Music Service which offers its participants the opportunity to sing together as part of an ensemble, accompanied by a live band.

The live band, made up of peripatetic musicians from the Music Service, led the students through a varied selection of songs across a wide range of genres. A particular highlight, and a perhaps unexpected favourite of the day, was ‘We Built This City’ by the band Starship. 

Withernsea High School’s involvement in the Big Sing is now an annual and popular fixture in the music department’s events calendar. Mrs Croombs commented: ‘The students had a fantastic time at the Big Sing this year and really enjoyed taking part. Once again, they conducted themselves impeccably and helped show our school at its very best. Thank you to the East Riding Music Service for planning such a great event – we are already looking forward to next year!’


Year 10 Performance Evening  

Wednesday 11th July proved to a busy day for the school’s music department as no sooner had Mrs Croombs returned from the Big Sing in Bridlington, she was back in the school hall preparing for a performance evening.

Students from the Year 10 music group had planned and organised their own gig as part of their work towards gaining BTEC qualifications.

The event was two months in the planning, with the students overseeing everything from auditions to advertising. Many of the group also opted to perform at the event, which they did alongside students from other year groups who had passed earlier auditions to take part.

The evening delivered a fantastic variety of performances, from vocal duets to piano solos, which encompassed a range of genres to please any musical palette.

Mrs Croombs commented: 'There has always been a fantastic pool of talented musicians at Withernsea High School and this evening highlighted the amazing variety of talent we have. A huge congratulations to Year 10 for planning such a well-organised event and for conducting themselves so professionally throughout.’

The event marked a welcome return for performances in the school’s main hall, with this being the first since the installation of the room’s new sound and lighting equipment.

Through ticket and refreshment sales, plus a number of kind donations, over £100 was raised during the event. This money will be donated to ‘Jessie’s Fund’ – a charity which provides music education for children with disabilities.