Shebbear College singers, Mitzi in Lower Sixth, Henry in Year 9 and Ben in Year 5 took on a ‘Head’s Challenge’ in the last week of term — to recreate the ‘Merry Christmas’ song by Ed Sheeran and Elton John, Shebbear style.

The pupils learnt the song over the weekend with musicians Henry and Mitzi even writing a three-part harmony for certain parts. They then recorded the song with Rebecca Sadler-Smith, head of digital, creative and performing arts at Shebbear College, in the school’s recording studio, before taking part in the filming of various scenes across the school (including the magical Christmas grotto created by the school’s maintenance team last year) to create an in-house music video.

Head, Caroline Kirby, said: “I am a big fan of the Merry Christmas song, it’s such a fun video and makes me feel very festive. Thinking about Prospect Lane, our fantastic Christmas grotto as a backdrop, I mentioned to our heads of marketing and performing arts that we should do a Shebbear version with some pupils, and before I knew it, it became a ‘Head’s Challenge’ to recreate this music video.

“I am so impressed with the three pupils involved, who completely rose to the challenge and by the sounds of it, had a lot of fun with the singing and filming! It’s such a great Christmas end of term message from Shebbear — I love it!”

Older pupils Mitzi and Henry are no strangers to performing, both being talented singers and songwriters.

Gifted guitar player and vocalist Henry, also a sports scholar at Shebbear, has previously performed at local festivals and enjoys writing music in his spare time.

Meanwhile, A-Level student Mitzi has recently released her second single, Lost + Found, following the success of her debut single, Trivial, earlier this year. Mitzi, who works with London-based producer and writer Andy Gilbert along with her manager, Haydn Williams, wrote Trivial during lockdown and is delighted to be able to release a second single.

“This single has been a long time coming,” says Mitzi. “I feel like it encapsulates the teenage habit of over-thinking to the point of irrationality, and it articulates a feeling that I’ve wanted to express for a long time. I’m really glad that it’s out, and I hope that young people in particular can relate to it!”