Brunel at the Barbican

On Monday 7 July, ARK Brunel joined 750 pupils from 25 academies in the ARK Schools network.  They came together to perform in the sixth ARK Schools Music Gala held at the world-renowned Barbican Centre in London. A packed audience of around 1000 supporters celebrated the achievements of students from throughout the network. The Barbican Centre, which is normally home to the likes of the London Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Shakespeare Company, hosted ARK Schools children who performed a range of music from John Williams to Pharrell Williams. The event involved pupils of all musical abilities and ages, in a bid to prove that everyone has the ability to be a musician, given the opportunity. Performances included the Eurovision Anthem ‘We write the story’ written by ABBA’s Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson, ‘Skyfall’ by Adele as well as Beethoven’s ‘Ode to Joy’. Pupils also performed ‘Hymn to the Fallen’ by John Williams, a moving tribute to those killed or wounded in battle, as this year marks both the 70th anniversary of D Day and the centenary of the outbreak of World War I. 

Bryan Welton, Director of Music at ARK Schools, said:

“Our pupils and teachers should feel very proud of what they have achieved this evening.  The dedication, inclusion and diversity of musicianship displayed on stage captured the spirit of this event perfectly.  It is clear from the audience reaction and the smiles on performers’ faces that their talent has been recognised and memories have been created that will last for years to come.

At ARK we know that music plays an extraordinary part in our pupil’s lives.  It allows them to develop skills and attributes that will set them up for future success. We believe every child can be a musician, and that through music, pupils become curious for all the world has to offer; they discover a life of spiritual and emotional fulfilment.  This is why music continues to be a priority for our children.”

Hannah, a year 5 pupil from ARK Brunel Academy, said: "I really enjoy being part of a choir with other ARK Schools. It helps to build your confidence.”