Message from Ian Robinson, Head, Middle Division
I wrote last week at some length about the various musical performances next week, previews of which we’ve enjoyed at our Primary and Middle Assemblies this week. They played beautifully both times, as a lead in to and final practice for, the various Form 7 bands’ participation in the Toronto Festival of Music tomorrow at York University. If they can impress tomorrow’s judges as much as they impressed the audiences this week, they’re in for some solid recognition!
Just as a reminder, or in case you missed last week’s column, next week really is a musical extravaganza. The Jazz Band will participate in the National Festival at the University of Toronto on Tuesday and the Concert Band and the Wind Ensemble on Friday. The Jazz Band will also perform at the Form 6 and 7 New to Blue Parent Orientation on Thursday. Lastly, all three groups and the choir will play and sing both at Grandparents’ Day and the Arts Night on Wednesday. We’re hoping for a major turnout of grandparents (some of whom will also sing with the choir, I understand) so please encourage them to come. I would also urge all of you to attend the Arts Night which will feature music, visual art, drama, public speaking, French films and debating. Please come and see how very alive the Arts are at the Prep.
As many of you know, I taught French in the U.K. and at the Prep for many years. It remains a passion of mine and so it was with a genuine sense of anticipation and interest that I listened to three Form 7 and two Form 5 students present their Concours d’Art Oratoire speeches at Assembly. I’m not exaggerating when I say that all five of them did remarkably well. (Don’t forget the challenge that this offers to boys aged 10 to 13 in front of their peers and teachers.) And I’d particularly like to commend 7G’s Ajay Monga (who spoke on Nicolas Sarkozy, President of France from 2007 to 2012), 7C’s Simon Ofiara (La Cuisine Française) and 7L’s Ben Swan (La Résistance Française). Also very compelling was the fact these three boys represent the full cross-section of French programming offered at the Prep School, one extended, one advanced and one core. They deserve all kinds of accolades for this fine work and effort.
Athletics is also well represented today and on Saturday. Our track and softball teams are involved here and away (one fixture combining the two schools closest to my heart). And on Saturday, May Day, which might be described as a summer version of fall’s A Day, takes place, featuring Form 7 rugby and softball teams in the morning. I hope many of you are able to attend and cheer your sons’ efforts in the athletic domain.
This week has been an exciting one for our Form 6 boys, with all of them spending two days and one night at Norval. 6B and 6L return this afternoon and to judge from the reports of the faculty and the boys after 6C and 6M returned on Tuesday, they thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
If you see my successor Naheed Bardai at UCC next Thursday or Friday, you’re not mistaken. He’ll be here on his last visit prior to arriving full-time in early July. Do say hello if you see him. For Form 7, exams are on the horizon and I shall write more fully about them next week
See you on the fields or in the halls. These are exciting days indeed.