Trinity’s Music Mastery on Full Display

Trinity’s Music Mastery on Full Display

Term 2 of 2024 has been particularly busy for Trinity’s Music Department, with concerts, examinations and events galore. 

The term kicked off with Trinity’s ANZAC service. During the term break, the Marching Band heads into the city to march on ANZAC Day, but once term is back in session, they perform at Trinity’s own Memorial Service. 

Following on from this, students are focused on AMEB Examinations. Typically, AMEB Examinations are held offsite, but with 35 candidates across the Prep and Senior School, Trinity has enough Music Students that AMEB sends examiners to the School to run the exams internally. 

In the lead up to the AMEB Examinations, Trinity also runs Open Recitals, with Tutors signing up their students to play one or two pieces to an audience of parents, in preparation for the examinations. 

“These recitals are a good way to prepare for the AMEB process,” says Dr Michael McGregor, Director of Co-curricular Music Pre-K – 12 and Head of Faculty – Music. “It also has the added benefit of giving HSC and IB students an extra opportunity for a performance in preparation for their major works.” 

Battle of the Bands took place in Week Five. With over 10 weeks of preparation between advertising, running auditions, Senior School students forming their own bands and writing their own original works, the event is highly anticipated and much loved. 

With 11 bands making it to the final, one of of Sydney’s most renown local drummers, Tim Firth, was the special guest adjudicator for the evening, assessing the performances, including one from a Year 12 IB student performing his own work as part of a submission for the IB, called the Contemporary Music Maker. 

Once Battle of the Bands wrapped up, all focus shifted to Gala Concert and Winter Concerts, two of the term’s most anticipated events.  

The Gala Concert showcases Trinity’s top end ensembles at Sydney’s City Recital Hall and this year’s event featured works which spoke of time and place, sights and sounds and emotional states that are reflections of humanity, brought to us by our senses and experienced in our brain. The program included: 

  • 20 performances 
  • 200+ student performers 
  • 10 ensembles, including choirs 

“This year’s Gala Concert was particularly successful in showcasing a lot of the senior talent and being able to showcase solo works with an orchestra,” Dr McGregor says. “There was a real display of depth, the quality was high and the difficulty of works being performed was exceptional.” 

“For me, a lot of those COVID ‘holes’ are starting to be filled. The last couple of years, there has been an element of patchwork to the Gala Concert as we’ve needed to bring in adults to play certain parts … we just didn’t have a student to do it. But now, the program has more or less recovered. When you have 12 months of students not being able to play instruments, it has an impact.” 

One area where this impact is still being felt is in the Senior years of the Choir, where there are fewer students who joined in during their earlier years due to restrictions around singing together. 

Even still, Dr McGregor says that the performance where the Senior School’s Choir combined with the Prep and Junior Choirs, accompanied by the full Symphony Orchestra, to bring together 200 boys for a single item was a particular highlight of this year. 

“The Gala is quite a complex operation, because it’s an ‘outside’ performance. There’s just more logistics and organisation that needs to go into the event.” 

The Term barrels towards the finish line with the Winter Concert, with intermediate ensembles performing at that event. 

And, of course, bookending the Term, the Marching Band accompanies the Cadet Parade during the final days of the Term providing musical cues. 

As another eventful Term wraps up, Dr McGregor is preparing for the events lined up in Term 3, which include the Big Band Night of Jazz, the Chamber Music Recital in the Delmar Gallery, a new Contemporary Soloist Showcase (which encourages contemporary musicians to audition for a solo spot accompanied by a Trinity House Band) and, of course, the performances of HSC and IB works. 

The Year is rounded out with Term 4 events: Summer Vibes Concert, Kindy Proms and of course the all important musical contribution to Speech Day in the Town Hall.

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