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Music at WHGS involves developing your performance, compositon, appraising and listening skills. You will do this through a series of lessons which look at the three discreet areas (performance, composition and appraising) as a whole. 

  • You will explore composition techniques and look at a ways to explore and push you creative ideas by using the recording studio and iMacs (a choice of Sibelius or Logic Pro X), as guided by the classroom teacher and sound technician.
  • You will get the the opportunity to access a suite of practice rooms during curriculum time to develop individual rehearsal practice techniques with the support of your classroom teacher and specialized peripatetics.
  • All sections of the course are supported throughout with musical theory, analysis and critial listening exercises in order to aid study throughout. 

Music follows a two year linear format building and embedding on your skills throughout. 

AS Content:

Component 1: Performing (30%)

  • A performance consisting of a minimum of two pieces either as a soloist or as part of an ensemble or a combination of both. 
  • Total duration of pieces 6-8 minutes
  • Grade 5 is the expected standard (it is acceptable to play graded pieces that are lower or higher)
  • Non-exam assessment (external moderator visit)

Component 2: Composing (AS 30%)

  • Two compositions. 1st:  in response to a brief set by the exam board) 2nd: a free composition.
  • Total duration of compositions: 4½ -7 minutes
  • Non-exam assessment: (externally assessed) 

Component 3: Appraising (AS 40%)

  • Written / Listening examination: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Area of study A: The Western Classical Tradition
  • A choice of one area of study from: B: Rock and Pop C: Musical Theatre D: Jazz

A Level Content:  

Component 1: Performing (35%)

  • A performance consisting of a minimum of three pieces either as a soloist or as part of an ensemble or a combination of both. 
  • Total duration of pieces 10-12 minutes
  • Grade 6 is the expected standard (it is acceptable to play graded pieces that are lower or higher)
  • Non-exam assessment (external moderator visit)

Component 2: Composing (25%)

  • Two compositions. 1st:  in response to a brief set by the exam board) 2nd: a free composition.
  • Total duration of compositions: 4-6 minutes
  • Non-exam assessment: (externally assessed) 

Component 3: Appraising (40%)

  • Written / Listening examination: 2 hours 15 minutes
  • Area of study A: The Western Classical Tradition
  • A choice of one area of study from: B: Rock and Pop C: Musical Theatre D: Jazz
  • A choice of one area of study from: E: 20th Century Music F: 21st Century Music

Assessment 

For both AS and A Level, Composition and Performance work needs to be ready for submission / performance by the end of April / beginning of May and an end of year linear exam will feature all listening and appraising work studied. 
 

Facilities

  • The Music Department is equipped with two main teaching spaces, one including a suite of iMacs (using Sibelius and Logic Pro X), five practice spaces, a control and live recording room
  • We also have a team of specialised insturmental staff in place as well as an expert sound / AV technician
  • 1:1 Instrumental and vocal lessons are heavily subsidized by the school 

Enrichment

  • Many concerts and events take place during the school year in school, in the local community and as part of United Learning National Events. 
  • Ensembles include a fusion band playing a mix of soul, Cuban styles among many more as well as a upper school vocal group. Both are run by specialist music staff. 
  • Close links have been formed with One Education, Brighter Sounds, Manchester Camerata, Hallé and Bridgewater Hall as well as Royal Northern College of Music, Access and Aspire Studios. 

Future Careers

This course is suitable for:

  • Students who wish to undertake further studies in music or music technology in further education.
  • Students who are looking to take up careers for which a music / creative background is relevant. These might include Performance, Recording and Technical roles, Management and promotion, Media or follow a pedagogical / teaching route.
  • Students who have an interest in and aptitude or the subject, but who do not intend to take the subject beyond AS or A level.
     

The school is part of United Learning. United Learning comprises: UCST (Registered in England No: 2780748. Charity No. 1016538) and ULT (Registered in England No. 4439859. An Exempt Charity). Companies limited by guarantee. VAT number 834 8515 12.
Registered address: United Learning, Worldwide House, Thorpe Wood, Peterborough, PE3 6SB. Tel: 01832 864 444

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