You can’t walk very far around Long Close without hearing the sound of music. It could be a classroom activity led by our Director of Music. It could be a practice session for one of our orchestras or choirs. Or it could be a one-to-one lesson with a specialist tutor in the violin, trumpet, piano, recorder, flute, saxophone, classical guitar or singing.
Whatever the source, it exemplifies our commitment to the benefits of a musical education. It equips our children with the skill to play an instrument; opens their eyes and ears to the richness of the cultural world; teaches them the value of hard work, perseverance and preparation; and challenges them to test out their skills and nerve in regular termly concerts and performances. In some cases it can also open doors to later stages of education as it did for a recent Year 6 pupil, who won a prestigious music scholarship to Hampton School.
In Years 3 to 9, our pupils also enjoy weekly drama lessons, provided by actors from the Everyday Theatre Company. These sessions culminate in the excitement and challenge of performances in front of parents – either at assembly or in full-scale dramatic productions. No-one who saw the recent performances of Porridge or Bugsy Malone, for example, could fail to be impressed by the energy, discipline, commitment, creativity and sheer talent on show.
One of the things that sets Long Close apart is that this specialist music and drama teaching isn’t limited to our Senior School. Even the youngest children in our nursery regularly enjoy sessions with our GCSE music teacher. We believe that this early exposure to quality, inspirational teaching gives our children the best possible chance of developing their own skills and interests.