“One of the first things that struck me about WHS was its musicality; the school is full of music – whether it be girls performing their own compositions in assembly, groups rallying together for House Music, my form insisting on singing every morning during registration (!) or drama-types rehearsing musical numbers in the main hall for the latest school production. It may not sound much to simply list the instances when girls show their musical prowess around the school, but from the perspective of someone who walks these corridors each day, I’d have to describe this aspect of WHS life as one of the most uplifting – and it all contributes towards shaping the school’s overall atmosphere and ‘personality’. What better way to start a rainy Monday than twenty 14 year old girls singing Bobby McFerrin’s ‘Don’t Worry Be Happy’ as you take the register?”
These were the unsolicited impressions of a new teacher in her first term at WHS this year. From rousing concerts, summer soirees, Monday Jammin’ club to the annual Battle of the Bands, music permeates Wimbledon High. Some 80% of students have individual music lessons and girls are keen to take their music outside of school: bell-ringing in Wimbledon’s shops at Christmas time, African drumming at the Wimbledon Village Summer Fair or choral trips to Italy, for example. Highlights of recent years include candlelit performances of Faure’s Requiem and this Easter’s performance of Handel’s Messiah. See Sophie playing one of her own compositions, and footage of other musical events at school, on the school video, opposite.