A busy Hall full of striking, colourful displays of Junior School current topic work greeted parents and family as they assembled for the Derby Grammar Junior School Arts Evening at the end of Easter term.

Arts Evening celebrates music and poetry and showcases the boys playing an instrument or delivering a poem. All are competing on behalf of their House, and the finale is the House Poem competition.

Mrs Sly, Head of Junior School, said: “This evening is a culmination of lots of preparation and practice. Each boy learns a poem, performs it and then each of our four Houses votes for their two favourite performers. They are the ones here performing tonight and competing in the House competition.”

The judges certainly had their work cut out as we watched some outstanding performances. Poetry recitals were delivered very clearly and were full of expression and character.

Musical performances covered a range of instruments from guitar, piano and drums, through to Indian drum. Some were just starting out on their musical journey, others delivered very accomplished and polished performances. All were confident and not phased at all by performing on stage to a room full of people.

After the interval we moved on to the House Poem competition which is always keenly contested. Derby House performed Tom Becomes A Giant by Charles Thompson. Due to illness, Danny very ably stepped in to the shoes of his brother to take the lead role.

Atkinson performed an hilarious Please Mrs Butler by Allan Ahlberg. It was modified to make it relevant to Derby Grammar School, complete with performers dressed as Junior School teachers!

Blackton’s rendition of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs by Roald Dahl was beautifully performed with lots of characters and a mix of solo and group speaking. And Bemrose delivered Sick by Shel Silverstein. There was great acting in this piece, the words came off the page and made it very believable.

Our judges were Mr Coley (Head of Music), Mrs Simpson (LAMDA teacher) and Georgina, the Derby Grammar School Drama Prefect. After much deliberation the results were announced:

Category First Second Third
House Poetry – Years 3 & 4 Tom Harjan Reehan
House Poetry – Years 5 & 6 Sam Will Jai & Chester
House Music – Years 3 & 4 Benny (drums) Nicholas (guitar) Iósaif (piano)
House Music – Years 5 & 6 Danny (piano) Tharusan (Indian drum) Daniel (piano) & Krishan (electric guitar)

The final announcement, to a room full of anticipation, was that Derby were the 2018 winners of the House Poem competition.

Mrs Simpson explained: “Derby won due to the boys delivering a dynamic performance with different paces, pitch and volume which really brought the poem to life.

There can only be one winner, but the judges were impressed with each and every performer who all delivered their lines clearly and with expression. We certainly have a huge amount of talent here in the room tonight.”

House performances

Music and poetry individual performances