11th December 2020 — This year’s Woking Music Festival looked a little different to usual, with video entries being submitted from children across local schools, hoping to be recognised for their creative talents. Greenfield School, a prep school for boys and girls aged rising 3 to 11, entered twenty-eight pupils across thirteen categories and were incredibly proud of the children’s success.
Founded by Nancy Leigh in 1926, the Woking Music Festival is now one of the largest of its kind in Surrey with over one thousand people taking part each year. The competition welcomes people of all ages and abilities and is a celebration of the musical and literary vitality of Woking and the surrounding area; giving young amateur musicians and dramatists the opportunity to be inspired by their fellow performers, and be assessed by respected teachers.
Amongst the twenty-eight Greenfield pupils who entered the Festival, there were ten 1st place awards achieved across an array of categories, demonstrating the varied display of talent at Greenfield.
An example of one of their multi-talented pupils is Sanika Das (11), a member of the Drama Scholars performance group. She used her dramatic abilities to triumph in the Public Speaking category; writing and delivering a poignant 7-minute speech on the idea of ‘Moving On’, drawing on emotions felt in moving to a new school - winning her the distinct ‘Outstanding’ Award.
‘Outstanding’ Awards are given to children whose performances exceed the level of Distinction and are rare across all categories. One such Award was given to the Greenfield Drama Scholars’ group performance in the category ‘Group Drama 9 – 14 Years’, titled ‘The Show Must Go On’. In this piece written entirely by themselves, the budding actors (ages 10-11) gave an incredible performance on the subject of COVID-19, specifically the lockdown and its effects on the community.
A few standout 1st Place winners from Greenfield included Guitarist Edward Tinsley (8) and Percussionist Harris Hamer-Hodges (10), who both won categories which included children up to age 14 years. Other Greenfield musicians who were victorious in their categories included flautist Annalie Morrow (10), and classical singer Ella Gray (8).
As well as the coveted ‘Outstanding’ award, Distinction, Merit and Commended awards were also given to pupils whose work earned a higher than average grade. Special recognition goes to Abbie Styles (11) who not only won 1st Place in Solo Acting, but also received 2nd Place in Musical Theatre Voice Solo, plus a Distinction in Musical Theatre Solo and a Merit in Musical Theatre Duet, the latter being with Anna Reeve (9). Anna also was awarded a Merit in Music Theatre Solo (Under 10). Other Greenfield pupils who graded at these higher award levels included: Saachi Rajani (age 10) for her Flute Solo; Lea Munnik (10), Elisabeth (9) and Jessica Pennells (7) and Poppy Richards (10) for Musical Theatre Under 10s.
Within the Greenfield school ethos, there is emphasis on the importance of discovering and developing passion, as well as identifying and fostering talent. Staff and pupils take these principles seriously, which has undoubtedly contributed to the outstanding talent and results seen at the Woking Music Festival. With expert guidance and unwavering support from staff, Greenfield are looking forward to seeing their current and future pupils blossom into the esteemed musicians and dramatists of tomorrow.