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“Singing complicated music is a risk all girls should take”

Composer and Director of Music, Philip Tebbs, believes that there is nothing quite like singing in a choir for improving girls’ confidence and that singing a complex score can be particularly rewarding.

His new composition, Child of the Snows, is a new choral score for female voices, piano, flute and violin. It is a ‘weighty’ piece which has been a real challenge for most of the young girls from St Gabriel’s, who gave its first ever live performance at the Girls’ Schools Association annual conference in Newport, Wales on Monday, 23 November.

Philip Tebbs says: “It’s important not to ‘write down’ for age groups. In a school choir the older singers will pull up the younger ones and being challenged to learn a difficult piece can instil huge confidence. In this respect, singing in a school choir can be a great leveller. Singing in front of an audience is a risk but it’s also the ultimate team game as everyone supports each other.”

Child of the Snows is a highly melodic, flowing piece that keeps every part of the choir busy. It has a Nativity theme with dark and mysterious undertones.

Composer, Philip Tebbs, and St Gabriel’s, where Philip works as Director of Music, want to make sure that as many girls as possible have the opportunity to experience the challenges that Child of the Snows presents. Consequently, they will be gifting the score to all the schools in the Girls’ Schools Association, the Association of State Girls’ Schools and the US National Coalition of Girls’ Schools, where risk-taking is a big part of developing girls’ inner confidence. 

Visitors to St Gabriel's quickly recognise that this is no ordinary school. Parents are always impressed by the sense of purpose and enthusiasm of the talented, committed staff and the confidence of the extremely happy pupils. We offer girls the opportunity for a seamless journey from Nursery through to Sixth Form, with our boys leaving us at the age of 11 for their senior schools.

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