From the desk of the Head Master 10 November 2017
Much of our time since half-term has been spent looking to the past.
Our Choristers, Guitarists and Trumpeters, performed at the Lord Leycester Hospital last Friday to celebrate the visit of James I to Warwick 400 hundred years ago. Since the school was based there at the time of his visit, it is not inconceivable that their predecessors sang or performed for him back in 1617, during his epic, three-day banquet!
Two days later, continuing the James I theme, our boarders, boarding buddies, boarding staff and their families (along with visiting boarding football and basketball teams from Loughborough Grammar) enjoyed fireworks and hotdogs from the safety of the Pavilion balcony. It was great fun and very well captured by our Lower Sixth boarder-photographer in chief.
This week has brought us 200 years closer to the present, with Warwick Hall transformed into early 19th Century Paris. Early reviews of Les Misérables have been fantastic and, frankly, I cannot wait for today to end so I can go and watch it. The boys and girls and staff have worked so hard to deliver the production, not only in terms of acting, but also the live music, the set, lighting and sound. I offer them my very sincere congratulations – it is a triumph.
We have also started marking Remembrance in Chapel this week – always poignant – and will do so on Sunday evening in our full Remembrance Service. All are most welcome then.
We have been looking forwards too. On Wednesday over 250 boys sat our 11+ entrance exam. I am developing a better understanding of what a ghastly day this is for parents, but the boys all seemed to carry themselves very bravely. I am looking forward to meeting more of them at interview in the weeks ahead. It is always great fun and they are, of course, our future.
We have also welcomed Rosa since half-term who has, on chosen days, joined the School Counsellor, offering support to boys; the early signs sound encouraging and I hope she will prove to be a really valuable addition to the pastoral team. She is a Portuguese Water Dog.
Next week will see us all focus on ‘The Power of Quiet’. Normally so beset with noise and constant stimulation, we will be encouraging boys and staff to take advantage of moments of quiet, reflection and even some digital detox. I hope it will help us all better to understand the ‘connectivity paradox’ that we live with – through technology, we are now more connected than ever in the history of humankind, yet arguably we are worse connected with others and, under greater pressure to conform to expectations, less sure of ourselves. Albert Einstein once said that ‘a quiet life stimulates the creative mind’. I hope it will do just that.
Our Choristers are featuring on Wednesday evening at the Albert Hall at the Last Night of the Music For Youth Proms (a first for us), with Lux Noxque, composed by one of our own. It will be well worth breaking the silence for this.