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News > School News > Hear from House Music Winners 2024 - Phillips

Hear from House Music Winners 2024 - Phillips

12 Mar 2024
Written by Hamble Russell
School News
Phillips House celebrating their 3rd consecutive House Music win!
Phillips House celebrating their 3rd consecutive House Music win!

Please read about the fascinating (and somewhat rocky) lead up to Phillips 3rd consecutive House Music win earlier this year, from House Music captains Aaron Halford and Yiorgos Velimachitis.

What does it take to win a House Music hattrick live on stage at the Waterside Theatre? This is a brief story of the marathon that was Phillips House Music, that led to our third consecutive win. 

The story starts months before the event with the selection of our pieces. Our weekly Phillips Council meetings were pivotal in creating a composition of pieces that would both present the audience with a refreshing experience, while also catering to our available skill sets. Special mentions go to Thomas Harrington and Geordan Atwell for their help in choosing the winning set. With the pieces chosen, we set out to climb the mountain that was getting them performance ready. Hit the Ground Running, our technical piece, was, as expected, quite technical, requiring many onerous after-school practice sessions to get up to standard. In the weeks leading up to the audition, a choir for the other two pieces was then meticulously crafted by Ewan Crafts and Phillips Headboy, James Duodo. Leading up to our performance, we felt a sense of assured calm, trusting that our performance would slot together on the day of the rehearsal.

Unfortunately, nerves seemed to get the better of us and our performance came out sloppy and inconsistent. Hit the Ground Running and Happy were both clumsy and loose all round, a silver lining forming in the choir’s stellar energy. Cold Little Heart was also plagued by disaster, with an inconsistent tempo and an out of tune guitar. Honestly, the situation was looking bleak. Our morale dropped even further when we were told to completely scrap Cold Little Heart, with only a week until our performance at the Waterside. After bargaining a second chance at auditioning we cracked down on rehearsals and practised with renewed effort. Our ‘reaudition’ was significantly better, however we were still not there yet. While musically we were spot on, the performance aspect of our pieces had not been refined and it took the combined work of the Heads of House Music, and some stern ordering form Mrs Jackson to create attention grabbing and energetic choreography to push our performance to the next level. The choreography would not have been possible without the discipline of the sixth form members of the choir, who were vital in organising the chaotic behaviour of the lower years. Pushing through our final rehearsals on the week of house music, we seemed to have remedied our situation, but the shadow of our first rehearsal still loomed over us.

After a decent run through in the dress rehearsal on the day of the event, spirits were elevated and we felt ready for the real thing. Our set kicked off with Hit the Ground running, where the skill of our crisp Saxophone quartet shone through. A tragic slip of the hand left Aaron Halford drumming one handed during his drum solo, but thanks to a momentous recovery he managed to keep his tempo, delivering a tight, expressive performance. The following piece, Cold Little Heart, was full of emotion, as Geordon Atwell, demonstrated a masterful vocal performance. It certainly seemed to be a far cry from the “unfixable” performance we had originally delivered. We ended the night with Happy by Pharrell Williams, performing with a vivid passion that had been lacking in previous practices. With the whole house brimming with energy we came together in this finale and enjoyed every moment of playing it. The House Music team would like to specifically thank Oliver Twelftree for his outstanding bass playing throughout the set, and our invaluable year 12 Heads of House Music, Thomas Harrington and Ewan Crafts, who will no doubt be excellent in their role next year. Most of all, we would like to thank the AGS Music Department for their invaluable aid throughout the rehearsal and performance, and of course the ever-supportive Mrs Jackson, without which we simply could not have achieved what we did.

Written by Aaron Halford (Phillips 13) and Georgios Velimachitis (Phillips 13)


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