The Choir: Our School by the Tower – BBC2

The Choir: Our School by the Tower
(Image credit: BBC/Twenty Twenty Productions)

Gareth Malone helps create a concert to mark the reopening of Kensington Aldridge Academy, a school which had closed due to the Grenfell fire

Kensington Aldridge Academy invites Gareth Malone to help create a concert to mark the reopening of their school, which had been closed due to the Grenfell fire

Seeing people overcome adversity through singing is deeply moving and Gareth Malone’s two-part show has tear-jerking moments to spare.

The pupils of Kensington Aldridge Academy have been deeply affected by the Grenfell fire.

Their school sits directly below the tower and five of the 72 victims were students.

They’ve also had the challenge of operating from a temporary site since the disaster.

But Gareth is on a mission to spread some much-needed joy by helping the students put on a concert to celebrate their long-awaited return to their original building.

TV Times rating: *****

The Choir: Our School by the Tower

Choirmaster: Gareth Malone

Three of the school’s students – Adil, Lyric and Olivia – tell us more about how the fire has affected them and why the concert will be a celebration…

What made you want to take part in this concert?

Adil: Because of Grenfell. I wanted to sing a song in memory of some of the people that died in it. Life is tough sometimes. You’ve got to just try and power through it. I’ve been through so many difficult experiences and I’ve let them set me back sometimes, but really I shouldn’t. You only live once, you’ve got to make the most of it.

Lyric, you wrote a song about the tragedy, which you performed for Gareth, didn’t you?

Lyric: Yeah, it was coming up to the one-year anniversary and we wanted to talk about Grenfell and our friends who passed away in the fire.

In this first episode, we see you perform in assembly ahead of the big concert. How was that?

Adil: I just went up there and did it. I was like, what’s the worst that can happen? It was nice – it was nice for people to cheer you on.

Olivia: It was nerve-racking, we were singing in front of everybody! But because the song is so important and impactful, I think it’s going to be remembered.

Mandy Cooper
TV Times Highlights Editor

As TV Times Highlights Editor I get to hear about all the latest TV shows coming soon. Here at TVT HQ we are in the privileged position of selecting the best programmes from across all the channels and streaming platforms. Our mission is to make it easier for our readers to decide what to watch - and give them lots of choice of genres - all the latest shows, plus some nostalgic choices we call hidden gems, too. My career began with a postgraduate degree in periodical journalism (ahem, yes old school!) in 1991 and I’ve worked in TV media since 2000.