To kick-off our new Alumna of the Month interviews, we spoke to Sophie Oliver who was a pupil at Bromley High School between 2004 and 2018.
She is currently in her second year of studying at the prestigious Royal Academy of Music.
What aspects of Bromley High School did you most enjoy, and find most rewarding?
I enjoyed my whole time at Bromley High; however, some of my highlights include the various performance opportunities I was given. For example, in my final year, I played a solo with the senior orchestra at St John’s, Waterloo. The school was very supportive, and also allowed me to organise my own charity recital in aid of Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, whereby I raised nearly £2,000.
In addition to all this, being a part of the Head Girl Team was rewarding, allowing me to fully immerse myself in all aspects of school life and take on various leadership roles.
What is your favourite memory of being at Bromley High School?
My favourite memory is participating in a fantastic performance of Karl Jenkins’ ‘The Armed Man’ at Southwark Cathedral. Bringing together all the Senior School choirs and orchestras, this performance will always remain one of my favourite concerts.
How did Bromley High School help shape your future career?
I was allocated the Harvey Award when I joined the school. This allowed me to study with an acclaimed professor during my time at Bromley High. I will forever remain grateful for this, as this opportunity enabled me to gain a substantial scholarship to study the cello at The Royal Academy of Music and pursue my goals as a musician.
What do you enjoy most about university life?
Having access to world-class musicians is inspiring, and I particularly enjoy the various masterclasses and numerous concerts The Academy put on each week. I have also had the opportunity to take part in some amazing orchestral projects, including playing in The Academy Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Sir Mark Elder. In addition, my string quartet are coached by the internationally renowned Doric String Quartet, and these coaching sessions are beneficial and enjoyable.
In what way is remaining connected to your alumnae network important to you?
I have only been away from Bromley High for two years; however, I have been back to perform a recital as an alumna. Bromley High has such a great community, and whilst I have left school, I still feel a part of the school network. This is important to me as I really value my time at Bromley High, and appreciate the support I was given from both staff and students in being able to pursue my goals.