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Issue Issue3131|| Spring 2008 2008

Going Green Prize for Coletines New Directors’ Weekend

Bartok Mikrokosmos Workshop Tibetan Trek

David Alton 1


Parents’ News After a week of constant rain, high winds and sleet, the weather was so bad that at lunchtime we were about to cancel, but even the prospect of a wet parade was less daunting than telling 2,000 Paulines, parents, family and friends that we had taken their money but there were no fireworks.

Fireworks

Miraculously, the weather had almost cleared by evening, and at six o’clock people started pouring in and assaulting the stalls and food vans: an amazing range included roasted chestnuts, BBQ, Chinese and fish and chips. In spite of the mud and the damp, our brave guests were rewarded with easily the best fireworks display ever – a symphony of colour, light and more than a few loud bangs. The atmosphere was electric! Many thanks to our helpers for all their planning and hard work on the night, the grounds staff for working overtime, Phyllis Street and her staff, and Jane Woodcock, our Events Co-ordinator, for helping to make it all happen. Claire Woolgar, St Paul’s Parents’ Committee

Colet Court Quiz Night The annual Quiz Night was back in February with a vengeance (we didn’t hold one last year because we had Geoff Thompson’s retirement dinner) and it was keenly anticipated by eager Coletine parents as well as the teachers. The evening was hugely enjoyable, and our thanks go to the Quiz Master, Gerry Leversha, for once again devising questions which tested our brain cells to the extreme! Yes, they are still there (just about!).

December 2007 Mrs J Holmden Mr J Holder Mr P Dailey Mr R J Humber Mrs F C Prenn January 2008 Mr C O Jones Mr J Mayo Mr J Holder Ms C Miller Johnson Mr M Foxon February 2008 Dr O S Sahota Mr A A Whamond Mrs S M Lukianchikov Ms S Wildsmith Mr J P Mayo For more information please contact Kristin Bayne at Kristin. bayne@btinternet.com or call Tricia Hosier on 020 8746 5317 or e-mail devadmin@stpaulsschool. org.uk The cover picture, ‘Shades of Meaning’, 2008, is an installation in the Art Gallery by Juley Henderson comprising large black outlines that mix abstract and representational motifs. At the exhibition’s opening Charlotte Anderson performed a specially choreographed dance within the sculptures.

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Gillian de Beaumont and Pretima Champaneri-Phillips, Co-chairs, Colet Court Parents’ Committee

Dates for your diary Further details about these events can be found on the Parents’ Group pages of the school’s intranet or by contacting Jane Woodcock, Events Co-ordinator, events@stpaulsschool.org.uk.

May Upper Eighth event, to be confirmed. Tuesday 20th May Fifth Form Parents’ Dinner at Barnes Grill, 7pm for 7.30pm Monday 16th June Colet Court senior sports day (reserve, June 23rd) Tuesday 17th June Colet Court junior sports day (reserve, June 20th) Thursday 19th June Sixth Form Lunch at the Bridge Pub, 12.45pm Monday 30th June SPS and CC second-hand uniform sale, Dining Hall, 1.30 – 3.00pm


Academic News

School inspection For three days, from November 5th to 8th last year, the whole range of educational provision at St Paul’s and Colet Court came under close scrutiny by a team of 13 inspectors from the Independent Schools Inspectorate. Their reports can be found on the school website. The High Master, Martin Stephen, commented: ‘Whilst St Paul’s welcomes its outstanding Report, the most crucial inspection of all is the one we carry out on ourselves on a daily basis.’

Library gift From the Universities Department Out of a smaller than usual year group, 52 Paulines have received offers from Oxford or Cambridge, of whom 46 are current members of the Upper Eighth and six left last summer. A high number of offers are coming in from other top British universities. There are more applications now for foreign universities, particularly in the USA. Each year we have about 20 Paulines attempting a variety of extremely highly-rated institutions, including Harvard, Yale, Princeton and Stanford. These can prove at least as competitive as Oxford or Cambridge. This year four of our ‘early action’ candidates have been successful: Gabriel Perlman (Yale), Will Lehmann (Dartmouth), Storrs Kegel (Haverford) and Adam Zethraeus (Brown). Other candidates await their final decisions in the Spring. Gabriel and Adam also qualified as semi-finalists in the prestigious US National Merit Scholarship Program: their scores placed them in the top two per cent of nearly one million candidates. Christopher Dean and Neville Sanderson

Anna Beer’s Milton: Poet, Pamphleteer and Patriot and Jonathan Arnold’s Dean John Colet of St Paul’s were two from the collection of books recently donated to the Walker Library by the Old Pauline Club following the Feast Service at St Paul’s Cathedral. Other titles include volumes from the Clay Sanskrit Library, two books by Stephen Walsh OP on Stravinsky and Mathematical Knowledge edited by Alexander Paseau OP. As this year is the quatercentenary of his birth, an apt view from Milton is that one should ‘read for action not in place of action’. Alex Aslett, Librarian

Medals in Physics and Mathematics St Paul’s came joint top in the British Physics Olympiad with four gold medals. Will Kalderon, Sasha Kasas, Nilpesh Patel and Dominic Yeo will now sit a further paper in the hope of representing the UK at the International Olympiad in Vietnam. We also secured two silver medals and seven bronze. Dominic Yeo also won a bronze medal at the Masters of Mathematics competition in Romania, where the UK team of three had its best performance for 12 years.

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Drama

Play visits

The best way of understanding a script or set of theatrical principles is through live performance. For this reason the Theatre Studies department organises a programme of diverse, interesting, and challenging play visits for its Eighth Form students, almost always provoking fierce debate. Among recent highlights were promenade productions of Faust and The Masque of the Red Death by the Punchdrunk Theatre Company, during which the audience moved freely around the detailed sets and became part of the action. Different individuals reported different stories, from being kissed by beautiful nurses (and on one occasion a male

transvestite) to finding a member of the audience tied up in the fireplace. There was certainly an electric sense of danger. Another highlight was a new piece, Small Metal Objects, by the Australian company Back to Back Theatre. It took place in Stratford East train station, turning the rushing commuters into unwitting performers as the audience tried to work out who was a genuine actor and who an innocent bystander. Joe Bannister (Upper Eighth)

Theatre Studies The performance pieces at AS and A2 are among the most exciting and creative aspects of curricular drama and will continue to play an important role in the new slimmed-down A levels. One piece is entirely devised by the students, based on sources and inspirations encountered over the whole length of the course, including productions seen, texts studied, the work of a given director or theatre company and the ideas of recent theatre practitioners. This openness and creativity has led

to some outstanding work which has excited, puzzled, thrilled and moved audiences to varying degrees but has never been uncontroversial or boring. There is much talk currently in the press about the seriousness or otherwise of A level Theatre Studies and it is worth noting that the London School of Economics has just returned the subject to its ‘acceptable’ list. Apart from the practical pieces, students study two complete theatre texts from

a performance perspective, four or five further texts from a directorial and production perspective (in preparation for seeing current productions of those plays) and study in depth two major practitioners, such as Stanislawski or Brecht. No wonder then that in recent years candidates with A level Theatre Studies have been offered places at Oxford and Cambridge to read subjects as diverse as English, Theology, Medicine and Geography! Edward Williams, Director of Drama

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Art Something old, something new Continuing our popular link with Cornwall, the Great Atlantic Galleries presented an exhibition in the Milton Gallery from mid to late January of printed works by 20th century masters Eric Gill, David Hockney and Henri Matisse, alongside contemporary works by practising Cornish artists. This was a brave juxtaposition that drew lots of attention, if not comparison. We are fortunate that many of the giants of the 20th century art world were prolific printmakers. David Hockney continues to dominate the artists of his generation, and the exhibition included his superb original etched illustrations to Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Also shown were some exquisite prints by Eric Gill, the controversial but supremely talented sculptor, typographer and wood engraver; and Henri Matisse’s lithographs based on his late cutouts – a real joy of riotous colour. The modern Cornish artists had much to live up to. How well this was done was evident in Catherine Harvey Jefferson’s loose abstract oils and brooding etchings, which have a growing following, and Eric Pentecost’s thematic landscapes, which are reminiscent of lush coastal walks; while Mark Spray’s almost tactile handling of paint gave a compelling insight into the more profound aspects of the Cornish landscape and Peter Clough’s collographs and porcelain pots reflected the ever-changing relationship of earth and sky. A pleasure of hosting such a show is that many members of the local community were able to enjoy it, not least Form 1 from Lowther Primary School in Barnes. Engagingly honest and circumspect, they responded with genuine enthusiasm to the works they saw.

Ceramics now The Milton Gallery hosted a sensational exhibition of ceramics just before Christmas. Some of the best-known makers in the country submitted work of sublime quality, presenting us with a wide variety of inspirational approaches and techniques. An aim of the exhibition was to instigate discussion of the place of crafts in education, and many teachers from neighbouring schools and colleges were invited to contribute. In a climate where ceramics courses seem to be closing in art schools owing to a lack of space or funding and competition from more intensively lucrative activities, St Paul’s is fortunate in its facilities. Like seeing your first photographs emerge in a tray of developer in the darkroom, throwing a pot on the wheel is consistently a pleasure for emerging Pauline artists. Let’s hope some of them were inspired to go further and continue this wonderful tradition. Nigel Hunter, Director of Art

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Music

Making music out in the world Quite apart from contributing to the rich variety of music-making at school throughout the year – in choirs, orchestras, chamber music and early music groups, and jazz, rock and music theatre – many Paulines also take part in valuable external musical activities. The major music conservatoires in London run successful ‘junior’ departments on Saturdays for talented young performers who want to further their development outside their regular tuition. A number

of Paulines attend courses at the Royal College of Music, the Royal Academy of Music and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. The prestigious ‘national’ choirs and orchestras, as well as student orchestras in London, have many of our musicians in their ranks, including the National Youth Orchestra, National Schools’ Symphony Orchestra, the National Youth Choir, the London Schools’ Symphony Orchestra, and the Thames and Ealing youth orchestras.

Chamber Choir goes to town In late January our Chamber Choir joined forces with singers from the Girls’ School for feast-day evensong in St Paul’s Cathedral. A healthy-sized congregation of Old Paulines and Old Paulinas enjoyed a range of English church music under the direction of Ben Parry, accompanied at the mighty cathedral organ by Philip Berg. One highlight was Patrick Hadley’s anthem My beloved spake, in which the organ contributed to the singing in most majestic fashion. After the service, members of the choir and their parents joined OPs for a reception at Mercers’ Hall.

The musical union of SPS and SPGS is usually made up of one-off events, but this time we had the pleasure of repeating the evensong ‘programme’ the following weekend in Southwark Cathedral. It was noticeable how much more confident the choir sounded at Southwark, since a second chance at performing in a huge space was just that little bit less daunting. On this occasion, the organ was played by Tom Wilkinson, an Oxford graduate who is presently working in music administration at school before embarking on a career in music. Peter Gritton, Assistant Director of Music

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In the holidays Paulines are regularly members of the Pro Corda string courses in Suffolk and the Eton choral courses, which prepare young singers for choral awards at university and music college. Participation in these worthwhile activities enhances not only the boys’ own musical performance, but also the standing of St Paul’s in the music community. Ben Parry, Director of Music


Colet Court News

A trip to Kew Gardens The weather was breezy and sunny when the Colet Court First Years went to Kew Gardens.

First we met the educational guide who showed us the Palm House with its gigantic banana trees. She told us about the male and female trees, how the females grow behind the male ones, and how their waterproof leaves have channels in the middle so that the water drains off and they won’t become mouldy. We saw amazing plants. My favourite was the vanilla pod tree; some pods were passed around for us to smell. Vanilla pods are rare, we were told, and it takes a year for them to be prepared for sale. The guide told us they cost £2.50 per pod! The ginger tree also had fantastic-smelling roots and looked like some plant out of Lord of the Rings.

In the tent-shaped Princess of Wales Greenhouse, Mr Groom asked us to draw cacti and flowers. There were hundreds of cacti with unique and weird shapes; some were stubby, thick and short, and others were tall and thin. The barrel cactus was round and spiky like a pirate ship’s barrel, and the Mexican cactus was long and spindly. I also spied some large baglike plants hanging off the trees, like thick spiders’ webs or vegetable bags. The best part of the trip was seeing the catfish, dogfish and stingrays swimming in the lily-covered pond. Looking at the pond from above, with its silent fish and tadpole-like creatures darting around, was like looking at a strange, alien planet. Nicholas Maini (Form 1J)

Chess victory On Sunday 3rd February, Colet Court entered four five-player teams in the chess competition at Hampton School. All the teams were highly successful and qualified for the Summer term semi-finals of the English Primary Schools’ Chess Association championship in Somerset. The two Under 9 teams fought off strong opposition from other schools to take first and second places, with the A team achieving a remarkable 22 points out of 25. The Under 11 A team came 4th=, with 15.5 points, and the Under 11 B team were just half a point behind them. There were some fantastic individual performances, and seven boys scored a maximum five points for their teams: Sidharth Bhushan, Dmitry Buyanovsky, Ashwin Ahuja, Emilio Sison, Robert Hindhaugh, Jason Kim and Valentine Bridgeman. Carl Howes, Deputy Headmaster

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Debating St Paul’s Debating is thriving: at both Senior and Junior levels boys are doing remarkably well in inter-schools competitions. Ben Woolgar and Dominic Parikh won the University College London schools’ competition, and Ben Martin and Ben Woolgar were second in the nationwide Cambridge Union tournament, just losing to Aberdeen Grammar School in a final on Scottish independence. Our Senior team, the two Bens again, is in the second round of the Mace, the prestigious national event organised by the English Speaking Union, while both Junior teams – Zac Levin and Ben Goldstein, Jamie Goodier and Jamie Murray-Jones – are through to the finals day of the International Competition for Young Debaters organised by the Oxford Union, having come first and second out of a field of 76 teams during a fierce day of competition in January.

a group of Fourth-Formers meet to discuss tactics and practise debating skills, and throughout the Autumn term Old Pauline Max Kasriel (now Oxford undergraduate) provided weekly coaching sessions for our competition teams – to great effect. Reports of all weekly debates, as well as other debating news and information, can be found on the school intranet. Particularly exciting has been the fact that three Paulines – a remarkable number – were invited to take part in trials for the England team. Ben Woolgar, Ben Martin and Dominic Parikh all participated, and Ben Woolgar, President of Debating at St Paul’s, has been selected to be one of the four-strong England Debating Team competing at the world championships in New York this Autumn. John Hudson, English Department

Debates take place in the Montgomery Room every Tuesday lunchtime with attendance from all years. It is an interesting feature that since the Junior (Chesterton) and Senior (Union) societies amalgamated, Seniors have regularly supported Juniors in their debates and vice versa, making for a lively and enthusiastic whole-school atmosphere in which the younger debaters can benefit from the experience and advice of the older ones. On Mondays

Tibetan high fliers raise money for charity As they prepared for last Summer’s expeditions to China, Tibet and Everest Base Camp, four Paulines decided to raise money for charity. Sam Stamp (Child Bereavement Charity), Jamie Mills-O’Brien (Musequality), Seb Brixey-Williams (Richard House Children’s Hospice) and Josh Gretton (Motor Neurone Disease Association) raised over £4,600. Not to be outdone and on the suggestion of Adam Mizrahi, several other participants sought sponsorship for the Lhasa Children’s Village run by SOS Children’s Villages. Just over £2,500 was raised, and as a result the Children’s Village now has a new minibus. Gordon Miller, Physics Department

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Service in the Community

About 220 Paulines are involved with voluntary work in the local community. Here a few of them describe their experiences. I aid a charity called HANDS, which works primarily with older people. The lady I help is almost without the use of her legs but has plenty of exciting stories to share. Recently we have become quite good at guessing who is going to get voted off TV shows.

Despite initial reluctance to participate in the scheme, I have found it stimulating so far and am learning huge amounts about interacting with younger children, something I value very highly. Alexei Kalveks (Upper Eighth)

kids club every Monday, and I can’t think of anything better than spending my time with up to 30 energetic, overenthusiastic children, all causing as much noise as they can! A J Foster (Lower Eighth)

Guy Makepeace (Lower Eighth)

I have been teaching Ancient Greek to children at Barnes Primary. It has been great fun, and they have learnt a lot – I fear that they may already know more than I do! Jonathan Marler (Lower Eighth)

Learning how to deal emotionally and physically with severely disabled swimmers has been a really rewarding challenge. Angus Hodder (Lower Eighth)

I helped lead a Saturday School music workshop for a group of nine and ten year-olds. The session was split into two parts. The first was an introduction to families of instruments. The second part consisted of percussion-based activities where the children could learn about rhythm, tempo and dynamics. Overall a very noisy and enjoyable experience! Ben King (Upper Eighth) I teach a maths course based around tessellation and code breaking to ten and eleven year-olds as part of the St Paul’s Saturday school programme.

I go down to the Viera Gray nursing home in Barnes every Tuesday. The people there really value our company, and we are often told that they can hardly wait until next week to see us again. Charlie Rosser (Lower Eighth) I currently help out with an after-school 9


Lunchtime Chemistry The Science Club was recently founded by Dr Gamblin and Mr Clarke to challenge Eighth Form scientists with tricky experimental and analytical techniques. Its first task was to create a rendition of the chemical, N-(4-hydroxyphenyl) ethanamide, otherwise known as paracetamol. Originally it had taken forty years to gain a substantial yet safe amount of the compound for medical use, something we were trying to recreate during Thursday lunch breaks for just over half a term. The project taught us many skills such as decanting, steam distilling and wearing safety goggles correctly. It also gave us the opportunity to use elaborate equipment and learn about more complicated chemistry reactions. Several boys in the group succeeded in concocting a fine white powder which appeared to have similar properties to paracetamol. Much credit must be

given to Dr Gamblin, who organised the experiments and always filled the sessions with an enthusiasm that removed the disdainful thought of doing yet more chemistry during our lunch breaks! Future projects include chemical cappuccinos, artificial fruit flavourings and man-made dyes. Ashish Mandavia (Lower Eighth)

Mathematics Masterclasses St Paul’s hosted a series of Mathematics Masterclasses for West London 14 yearolds. The students, selected through the Specialist Schools programme, attended eight sessions on Saturday mornings and were introduced to a range of mathematical activities and ideas outside the usual examination curriculum. Topics included clock arithmetic (or the connection between hopscotch and the CIA), codes and ciphers, triangle numbers and rectangles, the story of Fermat’s Last Theorem, binary numbers, and sequences. The classes were run by members of the St Paul’s Maths Department. It was excellent to see so much palpable enthusiasm, especially in showing how much enjoyment can be found in mathematics for its own sake. Owen Toller, Head of Mathematics

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Rebuilding St Paul’s

Rebuilding St Paul’s Rebuilding St Paul’s: news from the Development Office

After several years of investigation, consultation, analysis, design and preparation, our planning application for rebuilding the two schools came before Richmond Council in December. A positive recommendation by planning officers and equally constructive endorsement by Richmond’s Design Review panel had given us justifiable cause for optimism, but by no means total confidence in the outcome. We were therefore very encouraged to receive general support for the major part of the Masterplan, which maps out St Paul’s strategy for gradual renewal

of its 1960s buildings over the next quarter of a century and provides us with an agreed framework within which to develop. A somewhat less welcome aspect of the outcome has been the need to reconsider the design of one of the three proposed staff housing buildings. The masterplanning architects responded quickly, and preliminary ideas have already received initial support from the local authority planners. We are consulting local residents and aim to submit the revised plans in the Spring. We are also well under way with the outline design of Phase 1. A major report is imminent and will inform decisions on space allocation, layout and phasing as well as giving initial indications of the appearance of the first buildings. A first-class professional team led by Nicholas Hare Architects in collaboration

with Arup, EC Harris and Grant Associates has been working since last July to develop the outline design of the first phase buildings. Already there have been some exciting developments to the Patel Taylor Masterplan, including refinements to the library, chapel and junior music buildings. Key to this is a close working relationship with staff and the expert guidance provided by the Project Steering Group, chaired by Sir Nigel Thompson OP, who took over the role from Sir David Rowland OP when he retired as a governor in June 2007. In the next issue of Bridge we hope to feature some of the early plans for the first buildings and to give an update on the timing of the construction work. New information is added to the school website as it becomes available. Hugh Muirhead, Development Director

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Sports round-up National and international rugby After playing successfully for an unbeaten Middlesex team, four boys from this year’s 1st XV – Will East, Eitan Humphreys, John Melville and Dan Westaby – were selected to represent London and the South East in the U18 divisional championship against the North, Midlands and South West. Will East went on to play for England against Scotland and in an International Tournament in Treviso. Glenn Harrison, Head of Rugby

Olympic runner? Congratulations to Lucy Hasell, who teaches Biology at St Paul’s, for winning the women’s title at the Austin marathon in a personal best time. Her next challenge is the Olympic trials at the London marathon in April.

Triumph at national rowing trials

Bikeathon

Six Paulines raced at the Junior Great Britain Rowing Trials in Boston during half term. Out of 40 pairs on the first day Jason Phillips and Leo Carrington came fourth, and Paddy Daniell and George Hobday sixth, both very impressive results. The boys rowed long and maintained their shape and form into a testing headwind. The following day, Hugh Kohl, rowing with Paddy Daniell, also managed a top ten finishing position. These boys will now move forward to the next phase of selection process.

Twenty-two boys cycled round Richmond Park for six hours to raise £1211.30 for SSSK (Students Supporting Street Kids), a charity set up 10 years ago by two Old Paulines, Johnny Glennie and Ben Phillips. Theodore Chester, Lower Eighth

Andrew Mayfield, Head of Rowing

St Paul’s School, Lonsdale Road, London SW13 9JT Tel: 020 8748 9162 12Email: hmsec@stpaulsschool.org.uk Web: www.stpaulsschool.org.uk

Editor: David Bussey Picture Editor: Penny Holmes Art Direction: Inscript Design www.inscriptdesign.com Design: Toast www.toastdesign.co.uk


The Bridge Issue 32