Showcase of Societies – A whistle-stop tour of the Music societies at KCL

King’s College London is full of exciting music ensembles that perform all year round! Here are some of the societies that are well worth checking out. Feel free to click on the links if you would like to see previous performance recordings, or read a little more about them on each society’s KCLSU page. This post was written by Jake.

King’s College London Jazz Society and Big Band

KCL Jazz Society is the home of all things Jazz at King’s College London.  A whole host of ensembles belong to the society, including the King’s College London Big Band, and they welcome players of all backgrounds and levels of experience.  There’s a band for everyone! The Big Band performs a number of gigs a year, including regular gigs at KCL’s student bars ‘The Vault’ and ‘Guy’s Bar’.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the Big Band have pulled together a number of virtual performances, including Glenn Miller’s ‘Moonlight Serenade’ and Count Basie’s ‘Strike Up the Band’, a performance that brought together over 80 performers from across the globe.  The Big Band also performed a virtual Christmas montage! The society also boasts a number of small bands that perform at public and private functions throughout the year.  In recent years, the society has its own open-mic band ‘Pacific Sounds’ that is hugely popular with students.

Click here to go to the KCLSU page for Jazz Soc.

KCL Symphony Orchestra

The KCL Symphony Orchestra is one of London’s leading student symphony orchestras, performing two to three concerts every season, culminating in an annual summer tour. The orchestra features students from King’s College London as well as students from London’s leading conservatoires.  They have performed many majors works, including last February’s concert featuring Sibelius’ ‘Finlandia’ and Mussorgsky’s ‘Pictures at an Exhibition’.  In December 2019, they performed Shostakovich’s ‘Symphony No.5’ to a full house.

Click here to go to the KCL Symphony Orchestra’s Instagram page.

A Modern Music Society (MMS) Rehearsal

Modern Music Society

The Modern Music Society is the place to go if you enjoy 20th Century music.  They are home to their own Sinfonietta that perform classic and experimental works, including premiering compositions written by King’s staff and students. They run a series of successful composition workshops for students, and they also run a series of piano workshops for skilled piano players. In May 2020, they performed a virtual performance of the famous John Cage work ‘4’33”’.  Click here to watch. They also ran a workshop on Black, classical composers, in which they recorded six pieces written by Black composers.  These can be viewed on their Facebook page (see previous link.)

Click here to go to the KCLSU page for Modern Music Society.

The Threepenny, put on by King’s Opera in 2019-20.

King’s Opera 

King’s Opera perform several performances each year, and aims to promote opera to a wider range of students at KCL. It gives students the opportunity to both perform and work backstage on opera performances. Last year, the Opera society put on a performance of Bertolt Brecht’s ‘Threepenny Opera’ and they were about to perform their production of Mozart’s ‘The Magic Flute’ at King’s ‘Greenwood Theatre’ before the start of the pandemic. Previous productions have also included ‘The Barber of Seville’. The Opera society frequently holds recitals and masterclasses from industry professionals and have many opportunities to attend operas that take place in London.

Click here to go to the KCLSU page for King’s Opera.

GKT Musical Theatre

GKT Musical Theatre is one of two musical theatre societies at King’s.  In January 2020, they performed ‘A Chorus Line’ for three nights at the Greenwood Theatre.  This was hugely successful! Click here to see the promo video that they created for it. This year, they are preparing a production of ‘Cats’.  They hold a number of social events and masterclasses throughout the year and offer students the opportunity to perform on stage, in a pit band or backstage working in the production team.

Click here to go to the KCLSU page for GKT Musical Theatre.

GKT Music Society

GKT Music Society is the leading non-audition music society at King’s. They have an orchestra and choir and a mixed a-Capella group that perform two concerts across the year.  They also hold many music socials, including collaborations with other University of London music societies.

The ensembles perform a range of pieces, varying in complexity and style to cater to everyone’s abilities and passions.  This year, their musical director is Naomi Butcher, conductor, saxophone player and educator from London who leads both their online and in-person rehearsals. They also offer an open mic night that allows everyone the chance to perform to other students. Click here to see the Virtual Concert that they created for Christmas 2020!

Click here to go to the KCLSU page for GKT Music Society.

King’s Musical Theatre Society’s production of West Side Story in 2018-19.

King’s Musical Theatre

King’s Musical Theatre (KMT) are another exciting musical theatre society.  They put on two major productions each year. In 2019/20, they put on a production of ‘Legally Blonde’ at the Greenwood Theatre and were preparing for a production of ‘Big Fish’. In 2018/19, they put on a full-scale production of Bernstein’s ‘West Side Story’ with a full pit orchestra and cast.  They also performed ‘Sweeney Todd’.

Annually, they take part in a 24-hour musical challenge to raise money for charity.  They have 24 hours to rehearse and perform a musical.  They also hold a mid-term performance, showcasing the talent in the society.

Click here to go to the KCLSU page for King’s Musical Theatre.

And that concludes my tour of some of the Music ensembles here at King’s!  It should be stressed that there are lots of other music societies in other genres – you can find out about these through the KCLSU society pages, or alternatively during Welcome Week if you accept an offer to study here at King’s…

Read More:

If you’re interested in studying Music as an Undergraduate degree here at King’s, check out the Music BMus here.

Want to know what it’s like being a student on the Music BMus? Read Laura’s post on what she loves about her degree by clicking here.

To read about the professional music scene here in London, and what you can get from it as a student, read Rita’s post by clicking here.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.