St Bride's: Music - Lunchtime Recitals

The Major Music Scholars of James Allen's Girls' School

Tuesday, 9 February at 1:15pm - FREE ADMITTANCE - Retiring Collection

The Major Music Scholars of James Allen's Girls' School

Peter Gritton - Director of Music


          Concerto in C,

                   Allegro con brio                                                            

Betania Johnny (violin)                                                

Herbert L Clarke

          Sounds from the Hudson                                                  

Clara Falkowska (trumpet)


Ernest Bloch

          Suite Hébraïque                                                                    

Jeanette Szeto (viola)  


Richard Strauss


Holly Cook (horn)           



          Concerto in C

                      First movement                                                         

Clara Falkowska (violin)


Ross Edwards


Myfanwy Dew (oboe) 


De Falla

           Danse Espagnole                                                                 

Daniella Wu (violin)                        


Musicians of the highest calibre pass through the school's precincts, honing their musical gifts within a full and rounded academic education. At entry, some girls consider applying for specialist music schools, but since JAGS operates at the cutting edge of girls' education in Britain, for the brightest girls, it is capable of providing a holistic education that is regarded by many as second to none. Importantly in this context, the criteria for the awarding of Major Music Scholarships at JAGS is based upon the premise that, one day, the young musician might be capable of pursuing music as a career yet, with a full and edifying JAGS education under their belt, would have the choice to follow another vocation. In 2012, the most senior JAGS Music Scholar Claudia Moore-Gillon - violin - played Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto, having won the prestigious "Freda Dinn and Ida Mabbett String Prize" at Junior RCM, but she has gone on to study medicine; in 2013, the most senior Music Scholar (Mair Dew - cello) played Requiebros by Cassado, later in the year playing Saint-Saens' Cello Concerto, before conducting the musical Gypsy and gaining a place at Oxford to study Music. Most recently, we have a girl who reached the brass finals of the last BBC Young Musician of the Year as well as a couple of girls in the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.


The performers you hear today are all Music Scholars at James Allen's Girls' School in Dulwich, South-East London. They have gained this title on entry either at 11+ or at 16+, having shown exceptional musical ability in audition. While there are expectations of a Music Scholar to lead the way through their music, the chances are that the manner in which a JAGS Music Scholar deports herself comes naturally, sharing her musical gifts with others in the school community. The standard of music-making at JAGS is high and there is tremendous enthusiasm for performing anyway, so Music Scholars are able to utilize their talents within a flourishing environment. The Scholars are often the leaders of a lively chamber music scene at the school.


The ethos of the Music Department, and indeed of the whole school, is to be ambitious and inclusive. Jazz and pop groups feature at events throughout the year. Developing leadership skills and fostering teamwork are given much weight in the JAGS education, so there is a student-led Gospel Choir, as well as events in which the girls themselves feature prominently among the organisers, such as PopFest and the House Music competitions. JAGS has pupils from many different backgrounds and strong community links. The Symphony Orchestra at JAGS often plays entire symphonies and, together with the Chamber Orchestra, enjoys the bedrock of the orchestral repertoire. Choral singing is also strong; our Holst Choir has recently performed Vaughan Williams's Folksongs of the Four Seasons at the Cadogan Hall. (Both Vaughan Williams and Gustav Holst used to be Directors of Music at JAGS.) The students have just returned from a successful choral-orchestral tour of Northern Spain.