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Musical mission statement

Music is a subject for everyone. It is something we can all benefit from. Your health can be improved by singing, your confidence can be improved by performing and your ability to express yourself can be felt through composing. We listen to and analyse music to guide us in making decisions about the music we make and enjoy. Our aim is for everyone to have access to music and the benefits and enjoyment it brings. We want to challenge you to achieve your best in whatever your chosen medium is and guide you towards careers in this country’s most successful industry.

About us

We have a packed programme of events for you to be involved with in the next academic year. The Inter-house music competition, providing an hour of music from each house to fight it out to be the best musicians in the school, a 24 hour sponsored “Performathon” playing music all day and night to raise money for the next years exciting musical adventures, tea time concerts promoting performance skills in a recital setting, the whole school musical, and a music tour to Lake Garda. At Christmas we have a concert in Gloucester Cathedral and in a variety of more local venues. We also have a big summer concert where we show off our talents alongside Drama and Dance in a Summer Showcase. Some of our groups also have other concerts throughout the year. Back in Black has played the Cheltenham Jazz festival and Condicote Jazz festival this year amongst other events. Chamber Choir has competed in the Chipping Norton festival this year with excellent remarks.

We hold workshops in the school too; from hand drumming techniques to visits from some of the finest young string quartets in the country.

So if have an interest in music we hope we have something that interests you!

To view the 2016-2017 Music Events timetable, please CLICK HERE.


Music is an academic, creative and expressive subject that develops skills that can lead you into this country’s most successful industry, and is highly regarded by sixth forms and universities for science, language and arts subjects. It is an exciting and rewarding course that explores music through time and from around the world.

We currently study EDEXCEL GCSE Music. From September 2016 we will be changing examination board and studying WJEC.

Entry requirements: To take music you do need to play an instrument or sing to a standard of grade 2 or above. It helps to read music but is not necessary. The key is that you are interested in music as a whole and want to be inspired by new styles as well as research styles that interest you.

Performance: 30%. You submit one solo and one ensemble performance by the end of the course. These can be recorded at any time over the two years and be in any style of your choice. You can perform vocally or on an instrument. For ensemble you may perform with pupils on the course or people outside the course or school. This is really your time to shine!

Composition: 30%. You submit two compositions. These may be in any style you choose. We look at composing styles and have a go at writing mini compositions in the styles of the composers we study.

Listening Examination: This is based on 12 set pieces of music that we study across the course. They range from Mozart to Moby, Miles Davis to African Drumming. We look at Musicals, fusion music, abstract music and the origins of dance music culture. We learn how textures and structures developed from massive vocal works you might hear in the Baroque era and how the piano is used to its fullest with Chopin to how a Sitar really works.

In the exam you will listen to clips from 8 of these pieces and complete an extended writing piece from a choice of two of the other works.

Instrumental Lessons

We offer instrumental lessons in many disciplines. This is a major part of the department’s role in the life of the school.

Currently we offer the following :- piano / violin / cello / double bass / flute / clarinet / saxophone / trumpet / trombone / French horn / oboe / classical guitar / rock guitar / electric bass / drum kit / electronic keyboard / vocal tuition.

Tuition is provided by a faculty of 15 visiting teachers. The cost of lessons is significantly less than the cost of private tuition and in an academic year we can provide 280 individual lessons every week!

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