Following last year’s contest, broken up by intermittent lockdowns and a novel performance setting, the 56th annual House Music Competition was highly anticipated by all, with every House eager to take out the competition and bring home the hardware for themselves.

Similarly to the previous year, each House was to present one choral song in parts under the topic of ‘songs by a Melbourne artist’ and one instrumental piece of their choice.

Unfazed by the restrictions regarding indoor rehearsals, the Music Department, in association with the Heads of Houses, came up with a solution to allow Houses to have equal rehearsal opportunities while remaining outdoors. This came in the form of seven total rehearsals – two 45-minute practice sessions a week in rotating locations where everyone learnt, memorised, and prepared for the final performance.

Given these difficult circumstances, the end product that was displayed for the adjudicators was of very high quality and something that all involved should be proud of. All of the Houses performed with a sense of professionalism, and thoroughly impressed all those who watched it live or through the video that was published.

The competition itself took place on Thursday 24 February, and we welcomed the distinguished Mr Peter Bohmer, the Director of Performing Arts at Penleigh and Essendon Grammar, as one of the two adjudicators for the event, the other being our own Mr Mark Kerr, the Head of Music Curriculum and CGS Chorale. It was the first time in the competition’s history that we’ve had two different judges, and they gave much musical insight and knowledge into the nuances of singing and performing in an ensemble, and their comments provided an enlightening outlook on the performances that were given.

In an unprecedented fashion, for the first time ever, House Music finished in a three-way tie for first place, with Clifford, Summons, and Steven finishing on the same number of points at the end of all the sections.

After numerous hours of hard work put in by all the students, conductors, arrangers, instrumentalists, and everyone behind the scenes, it truly was a special event that brought the whole school closer in times when we have been separated so far apart.

Freddy Branson, Captain of Music