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Extra Curricular

Cultural Life

IBSC Conference 2016 131

St David’s aims to offer our boys an opportunity to enrich their lives and explore and develop their talents through the many cultural activities offered. Participating in cultural activities is scheduled and encouraged throughout the school, beginning in the Pre-Prep. In the Prep School boys participate in activities such as the annual inter-house quiz, the English Declamation, visits from various drama groups, isiZulu Day, the nativity play, chess, marimbas and choir. In the College, the cultural calendar includes oratory, chess, drama, music and debating. Boys participate in public speaking festivals, inter-school debating and our own ‘Just-a-Minute’ and Best Speakers competitions. The lively music and drama departments showcase the best of our talent, with two choirs, a jazz band, three marimba bands and an annual musical/drama production, as well as inter-house music and drama. The Music Department boasts close to 200 boys taking individual Music lessons in the Prep and College. We offer tuition on Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Flute, Piano, Guitar, Drums, Recorder and Cello. Music and Drama can be taken as a Matric IEB subject.

Debating

St David’s has established a proud tradition in the refined discipline of debating. At present we participate in the more competitive national league which is run under the auspices of the South African Council for English Educators (SACEE).

Drama

St David’s has a well-established dramatic tradition, and a number of our old boys are presently completing Drama degrees at university. Drama can be taken as a Matric subject.

Major Production

St David's undertakes a major production each year in association with St Teresa's Convent.  These shows have been a great successes and have  been sold out for almost all of the performances. The vibrant music, choreography and enthusiasm of the cast, all contributed to standing ovations from audiences and rave reviews.

Annual Inter-House Play Festival

The Inter-House Play Festival continues to give many boys their first opportunity to take to the stage, with the number of boys involved having increased significantly.  A special feature of this festival in recent years has been the number of houses working from original scripts – scripts which are generally of high quality and have resulted in some outstanding one-act plays.

Music

The Music Department has grown considerably in terms of staff members as well as pupils over the past couple of years under the leadership of Chris Luke. 4 new part-time instrumental teachers joined our department at the beginning of this year, to bring our full compliment of Music teachers up to 10 with over 160  boys taking individual Music lessons in the Prep and High Schools. We offer tuition on Saxophone, Trumpet, Trombone, Flute, Piano, Guitar, Drums and Recorder.

We regularly hold Music Soirees with great success, combining the Prep and High Schools for these performances, with many talented soloists as well as our Choirs, Marimba Bands and the College Band performing.

A number of our Music pupils play Trinity Guildhall and Rockschool Music exams annually.

Choir

The Choir regularly performs at, to mention a few, School Assemblies and Masses, Soirees, Valedictory Mass and our annual Prizegiving, as well as at external Choir Festivals such as the St John’s Festival at the Linder Auditorium. The choir often receives standing ovations from audiences.

College Band

The Band consists of 15 boys playing Alto and Tenor Saxophone, Flute, Violin, Trumpet, Trombone, Guitar, Bass Guitar, Drums and Percussion. Examples of our repertoire include ‘The James Bond Theme’, Bill Wither’s ‘Ain’t No Sunshine When You’re Gone’, and The Beatles’ ‘Hey Jude’. These and other numbers are all exceptionally well received at our Soirees, Assemblies and at Prizegiving. We have also performed to great acclaim at the Kingsmead/Lovemore Ensemble Festival.

Inter-House Music

The annual Inter-house Music competition has proved to be an exciting innovation with each house having to produce a soloist, a group vocal item (with no fewer than six boys) and a group instrumental item (with no fewer than six boys).
Audiences are often amazed at the wealth of talent evident in the St David’s school community.

Marimba Band

The Marimba Band was founded at the end of 2007. From humble beginnings (playing a very simple rendition of Silent Night), the Marimba Band has moved very quickly towards playing difficult and challenging works. The Band now consisting of 8 members, we have together arranged and perfected numbers such as Coldplay’s ‘Clocks’ and ‘Viva La Vida’, The Fray’s ‘How To Save A Life’, and the Xhosa Traditional ‘Pata Pata’. The Band has proved to be very popular, and many performances at School Assemblies, Soirees and Functions are utterly well received. In 2008 and 2009 performances at the Kingsmead/Lovemore Orchestra and Ensemble Festival, were received with a standing ovation!

Public Speaking

St David’s has a vibrant community of Public Speakers, participating in internal and regional events.The South African Speech and Drama College Public Speaking Festival is held in the first term and the learners compete regionally in teams against speakers from the same grade. Our pupils hold their own against the very best in Gauteng at these events, as well as at the Trophy Team event and the Individual Speaker event.The St David’s Best Speaker Competition is an annual internal event in the third term. Pupils from Grades 8 to 12 present prepared speeches on any topic, followed by the challenging impromptu round. The winners in their respective age group areas are recognised at the annual prize giving ceremony.