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'Half Term' Done Right


Hurtwood doesn’t have a traditional half term in the summer. Instead, while perfecting their exam technique, Hurtwood students enjoyed a packed and wide-ranging week of events in a fitting farewell to our A2 students who are soon to depart.

On Monday everyone headed down to the playing fields for Sports Day Hurtwood style. Out went the 1500m, javelin and hurdles and in came dodgeball, volleyball, rounders and some rather quirky relays. After the students had taught the staff a lesson or two in the staff-student football match (an easy 8-3 thrashing), it was time for the A2 students to don their glad rags for the Leavers Ball.

Tuesday and Wednesday saw a celebration of rock music in the theatre, with a special 20th Anniversary Edition of the ‘Gig of Glory’. Two decades ago, Dave Fonseka, in need of respite from the avalanche of Hurtwood musical theatre, decided that Hurtwood needed a platform for our many rock bands and he himself has played guitar alongside our students in every single gig since. This year was even bigger and louder than ever and to mark this momentous show, we invited back ex-students from the music business to once again strut their stuff on the famous Hurtwood stage.


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Zaza (currently studying at Berklee College of Music), guitarist Mike Asaturov and drummer extraordinaire Alex Wadstein amongst others treated us to a masterclass in Led Zepplin, Whitesnake and Deep Purple. Jenny Shen, music producer and composer at The Barbican and Guildhall School of Music and Drama, relished coming back to Hurtwood which had been so “instrumental to my musical journey”.  She advised students to enjoy the moment, stay curious and not to be in a rush to define themselves.

Ear drums nearly blown and advice taken, on Thursday the Hurtwood community was treated to the Dance Showcase. The packed-out audience enjoyed an extraordinary show from our most talented dancers who were performing in many different genres including jazz, ballet, tap, commercial and contemporary. The high level of each and every performance is a great testament to the hard work put in by the students throughout their Hurtwood careers.

Last but not least came Friday’s Leavers Concert. The entire school crammed into the theatre sitting cheek by jowl, to witness the leavers final performance on the Hurtwood stage. It was a moment for students to say goodbye to their contemporaries in true Hurtwood fashion, by picking up the microphones and singing their hearts out. Emotional, fun and yet somehow still  West End standard, there was hardly a dry eye left in the house.

This was a ‘half-term’ done right.