MUSICAL maestros were on proud display at a school in Angmering on Thursday evening (January 22).
Hundreds crammed into The Angmering School’s cafeteria to cheer on talented young musicians at the secondary’s latest Music Mania.
The show featured an eclectic range of melodies, from renditions of pop stars Paulo Nutini and Taylor Swift’s most memorable chart-toppers, to ginger-haired heartthrob, Ed Sheeran’s best numbers.
However, some of the students taking to the stage chose to debut their own material on the night.
Dynamic year-12 duo Emmie Johnston, 17, and Penny Hughes, 16, performed their song, Neverland, in front of a packed house.
Emmie, who wrote the tune and has been performing at Music Mania since year seven, said: “This is a great event because I think it builds children’s confidence in a way that you can’t do in the classroom during lessons.
“You have to be in the moment playing your music while all those people are watching you and that’s not easy.”
Emmie and Penny both sang together on stage in a stripped back acoustic version of the song, with Emmie on the guitar.
Speaking during their rehearsal, just hours before the big moment, Penny admitted that nerves were always on her mind.
“It is nerve-wracking before you go on stage,” she said. “The nerves are still going to be there but I really enjoy it and push through it when I’m on stage. I just try and stay in the moment.”
Some 50 children performed during the night, with others helping to work the lighting and sound systems for the show.
Dan Godsmark, music teacher at the school, has been helping to co-ordinate the Music Mania for many years.
He said that throughout his time working on the spectacle, students have performed an array of musical genres.
“We’ve had everything from classic rock ‘n’ roll, to death metal, jazz, punk and classical music,” he said, adding: “This is just a perfect chance to display what the children have done over the year and all the hard work they have put in.
“It’s quite a big stage so it gives them lots of confidence and an idea of what it is like to do a really big concert and to perform in front of other people.
“For some students this really isn’t difficult, they’re naturally talented and just get out there.
“But for others its a really big struggle. Some students find it so hard to get out there – it’s a big thing.
“So for me, it’s really rewarding to see them actually getting up there and performing their music to other people.”
The night helps to raise cash for Angmering’s music depart, with all the funds raised being ploughed back into benefitting the children.
The school’s head teacher David Brixey was one of those in the audience on the night.
He said: “There are so many varied music clubs in school so it is impressive to see the performances the clubs have encouraged and inspired.
“It was an outstanding concert showcasing the talents of students from all year groups in the school.”