The culmination of two terms of hard work by the Millfield Choir and Orchestra was an occasion that did not disappoint. Wells Cathedral was the setting for a spectacular concert of music by two great composers, Mozart and Beethoven, performed by the combined efforts of Millfield students, the Millfield Festival Chorus, and professional orchestral musicians.
Proceedings began with a rousing performance of Beethoven’s Egmont overture, a highly dramatic work that suited the acoustics of the Cathedral very well. Based on a play by Goethe, the work traces the story of the titular hero and his self-sacrifice so that freedom may triumph over oppression. Beethoven’s music is full of technical challenges, tempo changes, and extreme expressive contrasts that make this piece so exciting as both performer and listener. Supported by the professional musicians, the students all raised their game and gave a performance that topped their first performance of the work in ‘Music at Millfield’ back in December.
Then on to the main event: Mozart’s renowned and highly respected Requiem. A masterclass in choral composition, this work features movements for soloists and movements for chorus, all accompanied by the orchestra. Each movement presented its own challenges: sudden contrasts, fast scales, and complicated rhythms, to name but a few. However, the students rose to the occasion, and with the support of the Festival Chorus and professional orchestra, delivered a performance worthy of the surroundings. Congratulations to all the students involved: the performance showed that Millfield students are capable of tackling these challenging musical works and giving a fantastic concert after all their hard work.