Bedales bids farewell to music maestro
Bedales School held its annual Parents’ Day last Saturday, a celebration where parents and family are invited to mark students’ achievements over the past year and enjoy a full day of events and displays across the estate including drama, dance, sport and music.
The event was particularly poignant this year as it marked the final outing for Nick Gleed as Bedales’ long-running Director of Music. The annual Summer Concert proved a fitting finale for Nick, who has guided several generations of Bedalians through GCSE and Cambridge Pre-U Music qualifications over his 28 years at the helm. Scores of Old Bedalians returned to join current students and staff in bidding Nick farewell – his final performance was a melancholy and nostalgic rendition of former Bedalian parent Gerald Finzi’s Eclogue for piano and strings.
Among those featured in the concert were students who have, under Nick’s pupillage, gained places at some of the top musical institutions beginning in September: Luca Caruso who won a scholarship to study Jazz Drums at the Royal Academy of Music (RAM), Caleb Curtis who was awarded a place to study Cello at RAM, Hope Cramsie who will study Classical Guitar at the Royal College of Music, and Antonia Richards and George Butler who will study singing at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire and the Royal Northern College of Music respectively. Two other senior musicians Quito Clothier and Elmo Meath-Baker have been awarded places to read Music at top universities and both students recently achieved very high marks in their Grade 8 performance exams.
From September, former Director of Music for King’s Rochester, Doug McIlwraith with take up the baton at Bedales.
Headmaster of Bedales Schools, Keith Budge said: ““Parents’ Day was a wonderful celebration of so much that is important to the school: of place, people, human ingenuity, artistry and variety - the repertoire of Nick Gleed’s final concert was uncompromisingly ambitious. Generations of Bedales students have benefited from his succulent, impassioned introductions to assembly and Jaw music, and his inspirational qualities as a conductor and teacher. Many thanks to Nick for all he has given to Bedales and its vibrant musical life in particular.”
Other highlights of the day included the school’s summer production, Me, inspired by the Sabina Burman novel, The Woman Who Dived into The Heart of The World, the eclectic Dance Display which saw all year groups take a collaborative approach to the medium, cricket, tennis, and school reunions for those who left the school ten years ago and twenty-five years ago.