Furness Academy Students Perform on stage with International Musical Stars

Furness Academy Students Perform on stage with International Musical Stars

Furness Academy Students Perform on Stage at Theatre Royal, Drury Lane with International Musical Stars

Students from Furness Academy performed on stage at Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, London, on 24 April with Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber, five members of the celebrated Kanneh-Mason family, actor and singer Jason Donovan and renowned saxophonist, Jess Gillam.

The concert was the celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the Music in Secondary Schools Trust (MiSST), of which Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber is a major supporter. It featured 250 students from around the country. They were all chosen by their schools to represent MiSST’s Andrew Lloyd Webber programme at the event. 

The ALW programme operates in schools all across the country and enables all students in Years 7 – 9 to learn an orchestral instrument, irrespective of financial background. The Music in Secondary Schools Trust (MiSST) provides not only funding for classical instruments, but also support in the form of regular tuition, opportunities to perform and a programme of excellence that is unrivalled in the UK. Children are given an instrument in Year 7 and follow the programme for three years, at no cost to parents.

The concert included music by classical, jazz and film composers, as well as, of course, music by Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber himself who joined the students on stage for a performance with Jason Donovan of Any Dream Will Do from the musical Joseph.

The seven students from Furness Academy performed on stage during the evening as part of an ensemble orchestra, showing their newly developed instrumental skills as violinists and flutists.

Lord Lloyd-Webber said of the evening, “I had the pleasure of joining the celebrations for the 10th anniversary of MiSST, both on and off stage. Congratulations on a wonderful performance. I couldn’t be prouder to support the wonderful and vital work of the programme”.

In the event programme, Jess Gillam, patron of the MiSST programme recognised the importance of these opportunities for students saying “Music can encourage Individuality creativity and innovation and the more we can share it with people in visceral, personal and meaningful ways, whether that’s listening or playing, the more we can improve people’s lives”.

Michelle Larcombe, Head of Music at Furness Academy, said “Seeing our students perform on stage in London’s west-end, alongside Lord Lloyd Webber was nothing short of awe-inspiring. The seven students we took to London are just a small example of the amazing musicians that are being created in our Music Department as part of the MiSST programme. As one of only a couple of schools outside London to be part of MiSST, we are so proud that we are able to be part of this incredible concert and show them our music skills. Our students were amazing and it was beyond wonderful to see them perform with the MiSST Together orchestra in the Theatre Royal”.

Headteacher of Furness Academy and CEO of Furness Education Trust, Simon Laheney said, “I had the pleasure of attending the Music in Secondary Schools 10th Anniversary Concert at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane. It is our first year as a MiSST school and our first time being involved in the annual concert. Seven students from Year 7 performed on stage as part of an ensemble orchestra with students from other MiSST schools and played alongside Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber himself. This was an incredible opportunity for our students, and it was inspiring to see the progress they have made in the short time we have been part of the programme. We are incredibly proud to be a MiSST school”.