Drama Over the past year, nearly a third of all College pupils performed on the Big Classical stage. In the Spring Term, we began with an ambitious production of The Great Gatsby. We were so overwhelmed with the high quality of the auditions in November that we double cast the whole production and rehearsed two totally separate casts. Big Classical was transformed into a 1920s jazz club with the audience surrounding the performers. The mature performances of the actors were underscored by jazz versions of pop songs, sung live throughout. The House play of the year saw a departure from previous House choices as Ashmead and Christowe took on the challenge of staging the full-length drama, Blood Brothers. A large cast, during a very brief rehearsal period, pulled together
Music The Schola Cantorum Chorister Scheme began in September 2017 following the creation of the Peterken Song School, made possible by the generous financial support of College friend Dr Bridget Jepson. The scheme is for both Prep and College pupils and it has also facilitated musical partnerships with local schools; we have choristers from Saint John’s, Bishop’s Cleeve and Saint James’ Primary Schools singing with pupils from Cheltenham Prep. David McKee Director of Music
admirably to create a brilliantly funny and often genuinely moving performance. Our final production Swallows and Amazons required the audience to suspend their disbelief and to accept that, at times, the floor of Big C was a wide expanse of water and the very next moment it was the rocks of Wildcat Island. Our talented performers used their skills, working together as an ensemble to transform our performance area into the wilds of the beautiful Lake District.
This year also saw the full launch of our London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) programme. In just one year our numbers have tripled and we have now been recognised as an independent LAMDA examining centre. Five pupils achieved the highest grade of distinction. Sian McBride Director of Drama
The Heart of Chapel restored The College Chapel touches the lives of all pupils, parents, staff and Old Cheltonians and at the heart of this lies the College organ. This year the organ had its most significant restoration since the 1970s and so remains one of the finest examples of British organ building of its period. The organ was built by Harrison and Harrison in 1933, when an earlier instrument by Norman and Beard was reconstructed. It was overhauled in 1976 when plans were set in motion to enhance the
tonal scheme. Further alterations were made in 2000, after damage from a lightning strike. The Double Ophicleide 32ft stop was added in 2013.
College reaches equal girl-to-boy numbers with the opening of College Lawn College Lawn, the latest girls’ day and boarding house, opened its doors in September to over 20 Third and Fourth Form pupils to meet growing demand for quality girls’ education within a co-educational teaching environment. College Lawn consists of two beautiful large Regency houses, near to the girls’ day house, Queen’s. College Lawn 1 was opened at the start of the academic year, and work continues on College Lawn 2, which will open in September 2018. This will bring the number of pupils in College to just over 700 and the ratio of
new to College in September, a particular camaraderie has been built between us as we have navigated College rules, traditions and lingo together.
girls to boys close to 50:50. Housemistress Mrs Jo Wintle commented, “The first term in College Lawn has been a whirlwind. With almost all of us – staff and girls –
“With College Lawn currently made up of Third and Fourth Form girls, (as well as a mixture of day, day boarding and boarding, the first of the houses to follow this model), we made the decision at the start of the year to have mixed dorms and it has been wonderful to see friendships building amongst the girls as the term has gone on.”
The Cheltonian Society Magazine with articles from the full range of Society members, from pupils to parents, OCs and staff.