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Xaverian College Music Department shines brightly with unforgettable performances  

The Music Department at Xaverian College has had a busy end to the 2022/2023 academic year with three unforgettable performances.

On Friday 30th June, nine student-led groups, collectively known as XBand, took to the stage in Club Academy, The University of Manchester, to showcase their incredible talents. The evening was packed with music from a range of genres, with performances from the up-and-coming Manchester-based bands, Polythene, Blue Java and Clovehunter and well-known College soul and gospel groups, amongst several others.

Former pupil from The Barlow RC High School, Kyle Roczniak, who is currently studying A Levels in Media Studies and Music and a BTEC in Music Technology at the College, photographed each band as they performed, sharing highlights on social media for the wider community to enjoy.

Kyle said: “XBand was a lovely way to end my first year at College. Everyone worked unbelievably hard preparing for the event and it paid off – the crowd loved every moment! I am passionate about music and photography, so it was great to get involved. I had backstage access on the night, which provided me with a really valuable experience getting to see how the crew set up and manage music events in a busy venue. My skills were put to the test photographing in changing light conditions and at tricky angles, but everyone was pleased with the results. I can’t wait to get involved again next year!”

The Music Department returned to the world-famous Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM), on Thursday 6th July, for a night of captivating music performances, as part of their annual Summer Concert. Over 120 Xaverian College students, alumni and staff performed as part of 14 ensembles, ranging from small chamber groups to a large concert choir.

Some of the evening’s highlights included, five student soloists, four of whom were winners of the College’s Young Musician of the Year Competition, captivating the audience with their recitals. Peniel Amegee’s heart-warming performance of Etta James’ version of ‘At Last’, alongside the Big Band, directed by Mike Cavanagh. Barnaby Simpson’s spectacular performance of the ‘Warsaw Piano Concerto’ by Addinsell, with an orchestra of over 100 musicians, directed by the College’s Director of Music, Andrew Levendis, and Charlie Fretwell’s scintillating performance of Liszt’s ‘Hungarian Rhapsody No.2’, performed on the RNCM’s Steinway Piano.

Before settling down for the summer break, on Saturday 8th July, the College’s Concert Choir competed in the Open Class Division at the Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod, one of the most prestigious choral competitions in the world.

The Concert Choir, directed by Ged Marciniak and accompanied by Ben Attfield, consisted of 70 Xaverian students, three staff and two alumni, received a dazzling review from the panel of judges and went on to finish in seventh position, achieving a score of 84 – only six points behind the winners.

Andrew Levendis, Director of Music, said: “All of the staff and students within the Music Department at Xaverian are a real inspiration. I love watching our community of extraordinary musicians performing together and the big smiles on their faces knowing all of their hard work has paid off. We’ve had another hugely successful year as a department, and we’ve ended the year on a high with these three unforgettable performances!”

If you’re passionate about Music, Xaverian offers an A Level in Music for those interested in Performance or a BTEC in Music Technology. Music is also offered as an enrichment option for those who wish to improve their skills alongside studying other subjects.

As one of the largest providers of post-16 education in the region, Xaverian College offers exciting opportunities to over 2800 students. To find out more, visit xaverian.ac.uk – Explore Your Future!

Photo by: Kyle Roczniak

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