West End Sessions - Hurstpierpoint College

West End Sessions

West End Sessions first began in 2018, led by Daniel Koek, as a means of bringing musical theatre to an even wider audience. It has since enjoyed great success, seeing Daniel perform with international stage stars across the UK, as well as further afield in Italy and Australia. During the pandemic, Daniel organised livestreamed versions the Sessions, whilst simultaneously raising £10,000 for the UK’s leading ovarian cancer charity, Target Ovarian Cancer.

Starring on the West End as one the youngest men to ever play Jean Valjean in Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables, Daniel has also released several singles on Spotify, and now offers one-to-one vocal coaching and performance sessions. In the New Bury last week, Daniel performed with fellow West End and Broadway performer Kerry Ellis. Over the course of her career, Kerry has starred as a leading lady in many well renowned musicals (including Oliver, Wicked, Miss Saigon and Les Misérables), recorded her own podcast ‘Keep Calm and Kerry On’, and released several albums, including a collaboration with long-time friend and Queen guitarist, Brian May.

‘West End Sessions Livestream began as a means to give hope to both performers and musical theatre audiences alike during one of the most challenging times the industry has had to live through. I’m so proud to see our fans embrace it in this way and now be able to take it around the world and share it with audiences in a live capacity again as we emerge back into the physical limelight’. – Daniel Koek.

The evening at Hurst saw Daniel and Kerry perform a wide array of solos and duets, including numbers from Cats, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, and Chess. Several members of the Hurst choir had the privilege of accompanying the duo for numbers from The Greatest Showman and Rent. Special mention goes to both Lexi L and Daisy B for their brilliant solo performances, as well as to our Director of Drama Luke Gasper, for his incredible duet (‘Bring Him Home’ from Les Mis) with Daniel.

All in all, it was a fantastic evening shared by pupils, parents, and staff.