Every spring The Royal Opera House in London runs a national competition to find 10 young composers aged 11-16 who have created their own fanfares. These are then played each night before the opera and ballet performances during the opera house summer season.
Freddie Renyard, a music GCSE student at Wellington School, was the winner of this year’s competition and was invited to spend a day at the Royal Opera House working on his composition.
Altogether Wellington School entered 31 fanfares composed by pupils in years 8 and 10. Most had very little experience of composing music for an orchestra, but of 150 entries from across the country, 40 fanfares were shortlisted, and of those 40, nine were composed by Wellington School students.
Winning composer Freddie worked at the opera house with renowned composer Duncan Chapman, as well as members of the Opera House Orchestra. He was given a tour behind the scenes, had lunch in the artists’ canteen and worked on scoring his fanfare. In April he returns to London to hear his fanfare recorded by the orchestra under the baton of conductor Antonio Pappano.
In May he will attend a ballet triple bill at the opera house where he will also hear his fanfare performed to the audience.
Other shortlisted Wellington pupils were: Ethan Cole and Daisy Steele-Perkins, Ellen Cowling and Joseph Stevens, Kaja Jankowska and Emily Beacock, Albie Kynaston, Beatrice Renyard and Hughie Vyse, Lucy Revolta, Marlena Taczarek and Kerri Curtis.