Music plays a central role in the life of the school, and all our pupils are encouraged to discover and further their musical ability.
The 1st & 2nd Form curriculum is geared towards giving pupils to a wide range of musical experiences. In addition to class lessons, every pupil has the opportunity to sing and learn to play a musical instrument as part of their curriculum. Instruments are provided without charge for the duration of the lessons, and pupils have the opportunity to join choirs and orchestras appropriate to their experience.
Class music lessons are based around a bespoke two-year curriculum and are streamed according to prior experience. Pupils who have not played an instrument before will learn to read and write music in support of their first instrumental lessons before progressing to the more advanced sessions. This scheme is supported by our team of 14 visiting instrumental specialists, two of whom bring experience from having previously led music departments in other schools.
Pupils who already play an instrument will be encouraged to take up another instrument from a different family, and if they already read musical notation will move straight into the more advanced stream which begins to prepare pupils for the written component at GCSE by looking at a range of musical styles including the music of Bach and Beethoven, baroque song, musical theatre, 1970s rock and the film music of John Williams.
The instrumental scheme finishes at the end of 2nd Form, and pupils who choose to continue instrumental lessons into 3rd Form may continue to hire a school instrument if they wish. Class lessons introduce pupils to modern compositional tools and techniques using a range of digital audio workstations including Audacity, Soundtrap, Cubase and Logic in styles appropriate to pop, rock, jazz and film music. Lessons will also develop knowledge of the sociohistorical context of each style.