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Arts and Events at St John’s

The Spring Term at St John’s School is certainly a musical one.The School’s premier string ensemble, the St John’s Sinfonia, takes on the challenge of an exciting new repertoire and we showcase our greatest musical talent in the Forbes Senior Music Competition.

We are delighted to welcome the Surrey Philharmonic Orchestra once again for what promises to be a wonderful evening, and internationally-renowned organist James Parsons gives the first of this year’s celebrity organ recitals on our new Hickson organ.

Charitable giving plays a large part of life at St John’s, and we look forward to welcoming back renowned explorer Levison Wood, patron of the AMECATrust. There are also a number of charity dinners and events throughout the term.

You can view and download a copy of the Summer Term Arts and Events brochure.

To keep up to date with updates to events at St John’s please follow @STJSchoolEvents on Twitter.


An evening of Swing, Jazz and Dance

Tuesday 2 May 2017, 7.00pm in the Old Chapel

This annual concert provides an opportunity to hear some of our ensembles for the last time in the academic year, together with an opportunity to see the exciting work being done by our dance teachers at St John’s. Light musical entertainment provided by the swing and jazz bands, and various dance groups newly inaugurated, will offer a sparkling start to the Spring and Summer season at St John’s.

Be prepared for an exciting array of talent, spanning decades of popular music. The evening will also see a number of the School’s leavers in starring roles, providing an excellent opportunity to wish them bon voyage just ahead of the exam season. Together with the summer rock concert, this event highlights much of the great creativity currently burgeoning at St John’s. A show not to miss!



This event is open to the public

Leatherhead Drama Festival

Tuesday 2 May 2017, 7.00pm at the Leatherhead Theatre

After winning the event last year, St John’s are returning to the Leatherhead Drama Festival with their performance of their devised comedy Something Old, Something New, Who’s in the Closet, Is it You? This Commedia inspired piece is a flurry of slapstick, misunderstandings and cake.

Adult Tickets – £9

Junior Tickets (under 18) – £3

This event is open to the public

Tickets are available on 01372 365141 or by emailing

May Morning Madrigals

Thursday 4 May 2017, 7.30am on The Quad

Join the Schola Cantorum to welcome spring in the traditional manner. Madrigals extol the theme of love in the early morning to herald the warmer weather and the promise of brighter days. Breakfast for participants will follow in the Dining Hall. The recital will include such popular songs as the medieval English round ‘Sumer is icumen in’, Orlando Gibbons’s ‘The Silver Swan’, Thomas Morley’s ‘Now is the month of Maying’ and John Farmer’s ‘Fair Phyllis’. Traditionally, such singing has granted good weather in future months. We can only hope!



This event is open to the public

Summer Rock Concert

Tuesday 9 May 2017, 6.00pm in the Old Chapel

St John’s is privileged to have pupils in rock bands – just one more facet of the School’s diverse musical life. Many of the peripatetic staff who have careers in professional bands are involved in running these, and often perform alongside the pupils. Hear the bands go head to head on this exciting evening. Acoustic performances have become an increasingly important part of this event, so prepare yourself for a host of diverse performances!

Please note, this event will take place in the Old Chapel, and not the Performing Arts Centre.



This event is open to the public

The Life of a Sports Commentator with Nick Mullins

Wednesday 10 May 2017, 7.00pm in the Old Chapel

Nick is acknowledged as one of the leading sports journalists and commentators in the country and is often referred to as the ‘modern day voice of rugby’. As ITV’s chief commentator during this year’s Six Nations, he has attended half-a-dozen Rugby World Cups since his first in South Africa in 1995 and commentated on the finals in 2011 in New Zealand and 2015 from Twickenham. He also heads BT Sport’s coverage of the Premiership and Champions Cup.

Nick’s career began in local newspapers, and BBC local radio before moving to Radio Five Live and BBC Sport. During that time, he commentated on Premier League football, the Olympic Games – including three opening ceremonies in Athens, Beijing and London – and the Boat Race.

This summer he’ll once again be commentating on the French Open tennis for ITV and Wimbledon for the BBC.

Tickets £10

This event is open to the public

Rose Consort of Viols

Thursday 11 May 2017, 7.00pm in the Old Chapel

As part of our exciting 2017 Early Music Festival, we welcome the Rose Consort for an exquisite evening of music for viol consort. With its unique blend of intimacy, intricacy, passion and flamboyance, the group’s music ranges from Taverner and Byrd to Lawes, Locke and Purcell. The Rose Consort has received awards for its research and performance of newly devised programmes, some of which have toured on the Early Music Network, and have commissioned and performed new pieces for voices and viols by Malcolm Bruno, Elizabeth Liddle and Ivan Moody.

The Consort performs extensively throughout Britain and Europe. It has appeared regularly on the BBC and in the major London concert halls and has made highly acclaimed recordings for Amon Ra, Woodmansterne and Naxos. The Consort has frequently collaborated with guest soloists such as soprano Emma Kirkby, mezzo Clare Wilkinson, the vocal groups Red Byrd, Stile Antico and the BBC Singers. The evening looks set to be one of the great highlights of the musical year!

Tickets £15 (£12 Concessions)


This event is open to the public

Part of the St John’s Early Music Festival 2017.

Concerto Competition

Thursday 18 May 2017, 7.00pm in the Old Chapel

Following its hugely successful inauguration last year, the Concerto competition is the last of three annual competitions to take place at St John’s (following the composition and instrumental competitions). This competition offers pupils the chance to showcase with a professional orchestra in front of an appreciative audience.

The pupils are required to learn one movement from a larger work for their chosen instrument. Seven competitors will go head to head for the unique and highly prized Concerto cup trophy. Instruments featured will include the bassoon, piano, violin and flute. Expect an evening of dazzling virtuosity.



This event is open to the public

In Memoriam

Wednesday 24 May 2017, 7.00pm in the Chapel

Join us for an evening of music, poetry and readings to remember the 12 members of the St John’s community who died in the First and Second World Wars and whose names have been newly inscribed on the Roll of Honour Boards in the Chapel.

We gather together in the Chapel on Wednesday 24 May for the dedication of the names of those whose deaths were unknown to the School until recently. No longer forgotten, Old Johnians from all the armed forces including Chaplains, a School Governor and a member of the support staff are among their number.


This event is open to the public

Refreshments will be served on the Quad afterwards

Celebrity Organ Recital: Colin Walsh

Friday 9 June 2017, 7.00pm in the Chapel

Colin Walsh’s association with cathedral music goes back over forty years. He has served, in various capacities, at St George’s Chapel Windsor Castle, Christ Church Oxford (where he took an honorary degree in music), Salisbury Cathedral and St Albans Cathedral. He has been Organist of Lincoln Cathedral for 25 years. As an organ recitalist he has played in all the major venues in the UK, most European countries, the USA, Australasia, Hong Kong and Russia.

His studies in Paris with the blind French organist and composer Jean Langlais inspired him to specialise in 19th- and 20th-century French organ music. In 1988 he played, at a public concert, the music of Olivier Messiaen in front of the composer. His recordings on CD and DVD as a choral conductor, accompanist and soloist number nearly forty over many years and various labels. More recently, he appeared as organ soloist in the BBC Radio 3 ‘Live in Concert’ series.

He describes the famous ‘Father’ Henry Willis organ of Lincoln Cathedral as ‘one of the best’. He teaches in Cambridge and London and his interests include travel, animals and good food.

Tickets £10 (£8 concessions)


This event is open to the public

Part of the St John’s Early Music Festival 2017

Middle School Play: Emil and the Detectives

Monday 19 and Tuesday 20 June 2017, 7.30pm in the Performing Arts Centre

If Ida Tischbein had known the dangers that lay ahead for her young son Emil, she would have never let him go. The devoted single mother waved Emil off as he boarded a train to Berlin with an envelope containing 140 marks to deliver to his grandmother.

Not long after boarding he encountered the mysterious Mr Snow, who drugged Emil with a poisoned apple, sending him into a deep sleep. When Emil awakened, he realised he had been robbed! Determined not to let his mother down Emil set out to track down the thief.

Come and join Emil and his team of detectives in a thrilling chase through 1920’s Berlin. This entertaining play will be performed by our middle school pupils from the Fourth and Lower Fifth Forms. This event is open to the public.

Tickets will be available online.

Complimentary refreshments will be served during the interval.

Lower School ‘Play in a Day’ Performance

Wednesday 28 June 2017, 6.30pm in the Performing Arts Centre

Parents and families are welcome to come and watch a showcase of the L3 drama performance. The pupils have been studying Shakespeare’s works including A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Tempest. This event will challenge them to produce a performance with only a day’s preparation.

Free tickets but booking essential via the drama department

This event is open to the public

Annual Art Exhibition

Date TBC, in the Henry Dawes Centre

We look forward to welcoming you to our 2017 art exhibition. The exhibition will showcase work from our A2 and GCSE pupils, and takes place in the Henry Dawes Centre. Complimentary refreshments will be available. Keep an eye out for dates in the Summer term.

Eagle Sports - St John's summer sports club

Weekdays from Monday 24 July to Friday 4 August 2017

St John’s summer holiday sports club offers boys and girls aged 8 to 11 a chance to play and perform in a variety of different sports and activities across all ability levels.

Hours: 10.00am – 4.00pm

Cost: £55 per day

Places are limited. Further details and the booking form are available on the Summer Sports Club page.

Leavers' Ball 2017

Information and tickets for the Leavers' Ball are available on the Leavers' Ball page.