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Music

The Music department caters for all pupils across the age range and approximately two-thirds of the girls have instrumental / singing lessons in school.

For the first three years, the individual music lessons are timetabled on a rotation basis. Several pupils attend Saturday music school at the Royal Academy, the Royal College and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and girls regularly win choral scholarships to Oxford and Cambridge.

 

 

Staff

The Music Department is run by Mr Robert Patterson MA (Cantab) FRCO LRSM (robert.patterson@fhs-nw1.org.uk), and he is ably assisted by Mr Ingham and Mr Smith.

Visiting Instrumental Staff

InstrumentTeacher/s
VoiceFiona Firth, Carol Hall, Samuel Queen 
Violin/ViolaCatriona Parker
CelloClare Graham
Clarinet/SaxophoneKeith Abbs
Trumpet/TromboneJoanna Harris/E Bassett
BassoonChristina Marroni
FluteRod Morris
GuitarDave Parsons
PercussionEddy Hackett
PianoKatherine Gillham, Jodie Schloss 
School OrganistOlly Lallemant
TheoryJ McLeod

Curriculum

In the first three years all pupils are allocated a double lesson of class music per week. Practical performance is key to all that is learnt in music, together with composition and listening and appraising music in its historical context. Every girl also performs a solo each term in the class concert.

Thirds (Year 7):

In the first term basic music theory is covered and the girls also learn about the instruments of the orchestra, blues and jazz, and World music. In the second term, all girls play African drums and then learn about Blues and Jazz. In the third term, the girls study and perform Folk music of the British Isles.

Lower Fourth (Year 8):

Throughout the year, the key characteristics of music from the Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic and 20th century eras are studied using the scale as a concept for building music. Practical activities dominate this study of Western Classical music. In the third term, the music of India and China is explored.

Upper Fourth (Year 9)

In the first term, musicals, Film music and an extended individual composition writing the music for an advert are covered. In the second term popular music from 1950 to present day is studied and performed leading to another extended group composition of a pop song. In the third term, electronic music is explored.

GCSE (Years 10 – 11)

The IGCSE course is followed. Students perform one solo and one ensemble, compose two contrasting compositions and develop their listening and appraising skills with the study of prescribed set works, historical eras and World musics. The music department has a suite of seventeen computers equipped with the Sibelius music notation programme for composition work and all the girls are all given regular opportunities to perform in school concerts.

A-level (Year 12 - 13)

The A-level course is studied and the skills of performing, composing and listening and appraising are developed in greater detail. A recital is prepared and performed publicly for which students also write a detailed investigation and report on the repertoire covered. For the listening and appraising examination, set works are analysed and studied in detail featuring music from the 16th to the 21st centuries.

Resources

The Music Department is well-resourced with two class teaching rooms and 7 music practice rooms. There are upright pianos in each of the music rooms and the school boasts three grand pianos. The school has a harpsichord and access to the organ at St Cyprian's Church (over the road from the school), as well as some orchestral instruments, guitars and electric guitars. There is a full array of classroom percussion instruments including a full set of authentic African djembe drums. There are 20 PCs in the music department all with Sibelius 7.

Beyond the Classroom

The Music Department runs many extra-curricular activities:

School Choir

Open to: any girl in LIV to UVI and directed by Mr Patterson.

This choir of 60+ performs at all the major musical events throughout the year and often sings in collaboration with the Harrow Boys School Choir for an annual concert in March. This group rehearses on Wednesday lunchtimes.

Senior Chamber Choir

Open to: LV to UVI by audition and directed by Mr Patterson.

Keenness coupled with an ability to sight read and learn music quickly are key skills for the Senior Chamber Choir. This choir sings at all major school events and also participates in overseas tours. Senior Chamber Choir rehearses after school on Mondays.

The 15

Open to: LV to UVI by audition and directed by Mr Patterson.

A real commitment to choral singing coupled with an advanced ability to sight read and learn music quickly are key skills for the 15. This choir sings at all major school events and also participates in overseas tours. Senior Chamber Choir rehearses after school on Mondays after Senior Chamber Choir.

Lower School Choir

Open to: any girl in III to UIV and directed by Mr Ingham.

Lower School Choir sings a wide variety of music from jazz to classical and they develop their skills at singing in two parts. Lower School Choir rehearses after school on Mondays.

Lower School Chamber Choir

Open to: III to UIV by audition and directed by Mr Ingham.

Lower School Chamber Choir consists of keen and able singers and they regularly perform music in four parts. The choir sings at all major school events and also participates in overseas tours. Lower School Chamber Choir meets after school on Mondays.

1st Orchestra

Open to: pupils by invitation of grade V upwards and directed by Mr Ingham.

The school's 1st Orchestra, consisting of 40-50 members, perform regularly at school concerts. Recent repertoire includes various symphonies by Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven, ballet and film music. The orchestra rehearses on Wednesdays after school.

String Orchestra

Open to: string players by invitation of Grade V upwards and directed by Miss Parker.

The group performs at all the major school concerts and there is a wide repertoire of music covered. String Orchestra often tours with one of the Senior Choirs. String Orchestra rehearses before school on Wednesdays.

Pink Ladies

Open to: Pupils by invitation and directed by Mr Abbs.

This is the school's jazz band. Entry is by invitation, but there is no audition or specific grade qualification to get in. The Pink Ladies perform in the school's main concerts, usually with a bright pink item on their instrument, and always play with the natural flair that a jazz ensemble need. Pink Ladies rehearse on Monday lunchtimes.

Creative Song Writing

Open to: any girl interested in song composition and directed by Mr Ingham.

This is an open forum for any girl who wishes to develop their song writing skills. This forum occurs after school on Thursdays.

Chamber Groups

Open to: All pupils with relevant musical ability and aptitude.

There are various Chamber Groups and these are organised according to standard and ability, including a variety of string quartets, a cello ensemble, a piano trio, two brass groups, two guitar ensembles and a flute ensemble. These groups normally rehearse at lunchtimes or before school.

Events and Tours

The Music Department has embarked on choir and instrumental tours to Russia, Italy, Belgium and the USA in recent years. Every second year a full musical is staged with Guys and Dolls in 2014 and the sound of Music in 2016.

Autumn Term

  • Music Scholars concert
  • Autumn Concert
  • ABRSM Examinations
  • The School Play/Musical or Foreign Tour
  • Carol Service at Marylebone Parish Church
  • Tea time concerts
  • School services at St Cyprian's Church

Spring Term

  • Choral Concert with Harrow Boys School at Harrow School
  • UV iGCSE Music Recital
  • A Level Recital
  • Piano Concert
  • String Concert
  • Wind and Brass Concert
  • ABRSM Examinations
  • Tea time Concerts
  • School services at St Cyprian's Church
  • External Cathedral evensong trip

Summer Term

  • Summer Concert
  • Vocal Concert
  • ABRSM Examinations
  • Tea time Concert
  • School services at St Cyprian's Church
  • LV iGCSE Music Recital

Music Scholars 2017 - 2018

Music Scholarships & Exhibitions

The Music Department offers up to two scholarship for each academic year.

III  Zoe Symonds

LIV Gretel Hoegel, Ayana Garcia Soga (Exhibition), Susanna Filippi (Exhibition) 

UIV Siena Hunt, Katie Wheeler

LV  Tara Murray

UV Stephanie Sheehan, Swathy Suresan

VI Form  Violet Beverley, Aisling Sheehan, Ellen Pallant (Exhibition), Alexandra Stephenson (Exhibition)

 

Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent.

Victor Hugo

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