Pupils come to understand better the human condition if music, drama and art are central to the life of a School. That sounds portentous, but at Bromsgrove we believe it. If the arts exist to tick boxes on CVs or turn pupils into performing robots, then better they don't exist at all. Experience can be amplified and intensified through the arts, and at their best they they can increase our sensitivity to and empathy with others. They are that important.
From Led Zeppelin covers to Tallis anthems, music at Bromsgrove is vibrant and inclusive. Our aim is to provide something for everyone. All types of musical endeavour are encouraged, and there are opportunities to perform in many different styles at a variety of levels, whether it be the hymn-singing in Chapel, an informal lunchtime recital, an Orchestral and Concerto Concert or an Evening of Jazz and Popular Music. Every pupil in the School competes in the Inter-House Unison Song Competition, and the other components of the Senior School music competition fill another four afternoons.
Many pupils form their own bands and Music staff organise a wide variety of ensembles. Large numbers of our musicians reach very high levels and several have gone on to secure places at Conservatoires in Birmingham, London (RCM and RAM) and Manchester (RNCM), Choral Scholarships or become professional performers or teachers. Our musicians tour regularly both at home and abroad, and a musical is staged every two years. In 2010 the acclaimed Chapel Choir (50 strong) toured New York, performing at St Thomas’ 5th Ave and the Cathedral of St John the Divine. The School’s Choral Society, last year numbering 120 singers, welcomes parents and friends as well as pupils and staff, and it mounts at least one major concert each year in top venues. Mozart’s Requiem and Haydn’s Te Deum were performed in Pershore Abbey, and most recently, Haydn’s ‘Creation’ at Birmingham Town Hall.
Weekly music timetables for current pupils can be found in the document library.
Theatre and Drama
Bromsgrove has produced household names for the dramatic world, and all the evidence suggests this will continue. Drama is a passion here. It can give a young person confidence in a way no other activity can, and the third spear carrier may have a life changing experience on stage to the same extent as a Hamlet or Eliza Doolittle. We are not about tantrums, luvvies and spoilt little princesses: but we are about opening doors to new friendships, wonder and delight.
From Sophocles to Stoppard, "Macbeth" to "My Fair Lady" the greatest plays and musicals are staged in studios and at the superb Artrix Theatre in Bromsgrove. As ever, we believe inclusivity is perfectly compatible with excellence provided pupils give of their best at an appropriate level. Every pupil has the opportunity to perform, understanding that a paying audience is not there to witness self indulgence: discipline and rigour play their part.
Few experiences take young people out of comfort zones and into the exciting, shifting terrains as powerfully as Drama.
Art, Design and Technology
One the finest Art Departments in the country, whether measured in terms of results, facilities, originality of work or leavers’ destinations, Bromsgrove's Art scene prides itself on being a hotbed of creativity. And the quality of work from Design and Technology would do a university proud. Young lives are often changed dramatically by, and in, these exceptional departments.
We offer pupils a wide range of inter-disciplinary areas including Fine Art, 3D Design, Textiles, film and photography. Pupils in all areas of Art and DT are encouraged to be ambitious, confident, imaginative and industrious and it is our aim to give them the best experience possible in the subjects, regardless of ability or experience. It is also our aim to enrich, empower and enlighten pupils. Independence of thought is encouraged (unlike many schools, we have no "house style") and dialogue debate and discussion between pupils and teachers is imperative. Many take full advantage of the departments' open door policies during activity slots, evenings and weekends.
Large numbers of our pupils progress to the finest Art schools in the country, and Bromsgrove designers are already changing aspects of life for the better all around the world.