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Little Sign Of Nerves As Talented Students Perform For Parents After Two-Year Break

Somercotes Academy Dance Club performs to 'All I Want For Christmas' as part of the 'Winter Showcase.'

Students at Somercotes Academy delivered a spectacular showcase which highlighted just how much they have developed during a two-year performance hiatus.

Unable to perform to public audiences since 2019 due to the Covid pandemic, the students showed few nerves as they climbed back onto the Academy stage for the first time to show off their singing, acting and musical talents to an audience of parents, friends and family. 

The size of the audience was restricted to ensure everyone’s safety and Covid measures remained in place with the hall being well ventilated.

The 'Winter Showcase’ set the bar high when it began with a mesmerising Aerial Spiral routine by Grace McDowall.  Grace has been doing Aerial Performance since the age of 8 and recently won the UK Aerial Championships in the Instructor Silks category.

Next came The Swirls, who gave a rousing performance of ‘Chasing Cars’ and ‘Highway To Hell,’ which lit up the room and had the audience  cheering them on. The Swirls are all musicians in Years 7 to 11.

It was followed by an accomplished theatrical performance from Kayden Fox, who delivered a short extract from ‘A Christmas Carol’ by Charles Dickens.

With 24 students on stage, The French Choir gave a beautiful rendition of ‘You Are The Reason’ by Callum Scott and Aleezay. Music student Naomi Hoyles then delivered a strong vocal performance with a haunting version of ‘Hallelujah,’ having only recently found the confidence to sing in public.

Year 7 student Kian Marsh confidently read his winning Poem from the English Inter-House Poetry competition, entitled ‘A Poem About Us And The Universe.’

The Academy’s talented Piano Scholarship student Charlotte Capindale played ‘How Long Will I Love You’ by Ellie Goulding before the First Act closed with the Dance Club’s performance to Mariah Carey’s ‘All I Want For Christmas.’ The dancers tumbled confidently across the stage in striking shimmery skirts.

The Second Act kicked off with dancers Poppy Green and Ella Hudson who performed to Adele’s ‘Easy On Me’ having choreographed the dance themselves. It was followed by Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight Sonata’ by skilled pianist Lillie Gregory, who allowed the audience to relax completely into her confident musicianship. 

Lillie then accompanied The Somercotes Singers who brought back the festive sound with ‘When Christmas Comes To Town.’ This was followed by a change of pace as Ella Gray and Leonie Willett performed ‘Blood Brothers, Act 2, Scene 2.’ The short extract will contribute to their Performing Arts BTec qualification.

Meeting once a week to develop their singing skills, Treble Makers took to the stage next with their version of ‘Girls Just Want To Have Fun’ by Cyndi Lauper. Pianist Grace Raby then performed ‘Salut D’amour,’ a piece which she recently played to pass her Grade 3 exam, scoring her 116 out of 150 points.

Christmas would not be complete without ‘Walking In The Air,’ which was delivered beautifully by flute soloist Penelope Shaw, who has also recently taken her Grade 3 flute exam and Grade 2 piano.

The concert closed with ‘Vive Le Vent’ sung by the talented French Choir  and performed with French sign language. They were accompanied by the KS3 Ukulele Club.

Comperes for the show were students Amelia Donner, Aiden Finch, Harry Jacklin and Gabrielle Jeffrey.

Ellen Barlow, the show’s organiser and Curriculum Leader For Music at the Academy, said: “I want to say a massive thank you to everyone involved in the show. I am incredibly proud of you all and how hard you have worked in the last few weeks in the lead up to this showcase. Thank you also to all of the parents who have supported us.”

Frances Green, Somercotes Academy Principal, said: “It is fantastic to see the students performing again. It is a really big thing for them climbing back onto the stage to perform to people after such a long break and I am so proud of them all for delivering such a wonderful show.

“I must say a massive thank you to all staff and students who helped to put the showcase together. It has been a real community effort. We wish everyone a safe and happy Christmas.”

Aerial performer Grace McDowall opens the 'Winter Showcase.'

The Swirls perform ‘Highway To Hell.’

The Swirls with vocalist Lillie Gregory perform ‘Chasing Cars’ by Snow Patrol.

Kayden Fox in a scene from Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol.’

The French Choir performs ‘You Are The Reason.’

Naomi Hoyles delivers a beautiful performance of ‘Hallelujah.’

 Year 7 student Kian Marsh reads his winning poem ‘A Poem About Us And The Universe.’

Piano Scholarship student Charlotte Capindale performs ‘How Long Will I Love You.’

Above and below: The Dance Club performs to ‘All I Want For Christmas.’

Dancers Poppy Green and Ella Hudson perform to Adele’s ‘Easy On Me.’

Talented pianist Lillie Gregory with Curriculum Leader for Music Ellen Barlow.

Somercotes Singers with ‘When Christmas Comes Town’ from The Polar Express.

Performing Arts students Ella Gray and Leonie Willett act out a scene from Blood Brothers.

Above and below: Treble Makers sing ‘Girls Just Want To Have Fun.’

Pianist Grace Raby plays ‘Salut Damour.’

 Flautist Penelope Shaw plays festive favourite ‘Walking In The Air.’

 The KS3 Ukulele Club accompanies the French choir to end the showcase with “Vive Le Vent.’

The French Choir included sign language in French for their version of ‘Vive Le Vent.’

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Somercotes Academy Principal

Frances Green