The annual concert featuring the school’s sizzling string ensembles pushed the musical mercury to new heights on Friday. The Junior Strings opened the show with a Renaissance dance executed with style and panache: these young players are definitely ones to watch for the future. The Intermediate Strings played a menacing march depicting soldier ants and a rip-roaring “Fiddle Faddle Hoedown”, whilst the Senior Strings presented an immaculate performance of a descriptive work telling the story of the Mary Rose warship. The children handled the many changes of mood and tempo with confidence, and the sinking of the ship was an exciting aural moment to remember. The guitar ensemble performed songs by Tracy Chapman and A-Punk, both executed with a well-controlled sound and good balance between the electric and acoustic instruments; well done also to singers Louisa and Molly. A quartet of Remove players tackled the intricacies of the famous Pachelbel Canon with great stylistic sensitivity and accuracy – an achievement all the more creditable as this was not an arrangement for young players but the original music as Pachelbel wrote it. All the groups combined in a moving rendition of the folksong “The Leaving of Liverpool” before the concert concluded with the Seniors, Guitars and guest artists in the form of the Chamber Choir raising the roof with Green Day’s “Wake Me Up When September Ends”. Huge thanks must go to the amazing strings teachers for their hard work in preparing the children for such a superb performance: as one visiting senior school director of music commented afterwards, it was the best prep school concert he had ever seen!