Top Marks for BMS Performer 29 June 2021

Despite the challenges of the last year, nine determined students passed their London College of Music (LCM) Music Theatre and Popular Music examinations this term achieving an impressive seven distinctions and three merits between them.

Former Head Boy, David Bygraves (Year 13) and James Probert (Year 12) both gained distinctions in the Diploma in Performance (DipLCM), one of the highest performance awards on offer, which demands a standard of performance consistent with a Level 1 (first year) undergraduate recital. Both of these talented performers are no strangers to the BMS stage with David probably best known for his witty portrayal of Tj in the hugely popular Sister Act the Musical in 2019.

Ranging from Grade 3 up to Grade 8 the other successful students were Former Head Girl, Phoebe Templeman and Roisin Thorburn (Year 13), Lilly Brittain (Year 12), Hannah Wright and Imogen Law Hing Choy (Year 10), Emily Taylor (Year 9) and Elsa Leahy (Year 8).

It was James who stole the show on this occasion, however, earning himself an outstanding 95%, the highest result for the DipLCM that anyone has received at BMS thus far. He has been in school productions throughout his entire school career but will probably be most recognised as playing the lead in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat when he was in Year 10.

Speaking of his achievement, James said: “I was completely shocked but could not have been more delighted. Having never taken a singing exam before I was apprehensive, but I had worked hard on my technique and was really pleased with the programme I had put together. I have a real passion for singing and performing, so this diploma was the perfect combination of both. I can’t wait to get back on the stage as soon as we are allowed to; I have really missed it!”

These talented students all benefited from the guidance and expert tuition of Liz Bottone, a visiting music teacher here at BMS who specialises in singing. She said: “The musical theatre exams continue to prove popular at BMS because they feed so well into the co-curricular life of the school. In preparing for these exams, students act through singing a variety of different styles. Not only does this support their love of musical theatre but helps them grow in confidence in their ability to communicate. The exceedingly high mark that James has been awarded is thoroughly deserved and represents his hard work and determination in all areas required for the exam.”