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Music at Holcombe Grammar School

Course description

Advanced skills of listening, composing, performing, theory and knowledge of music are developed throughout the course. Students will have opportunities to take part in a wide range of public performances.

Course content

Unit 1 – Performing This unit gives students the opportunity to perform as soloists and/or as part of an ensemble. Any instrument(s)/voice are acceptable as part of a 5‐6 minute performance. Students can choose music in any style.

Unit 2 ‐ Composing This unit encourages students to develop their composition skills leading to the creation of a three‐minute piece in response to a chosen brief. Students also write a CD sleeve note to describe aspects of their final composition and explain how other pieces of music have influenced it.

Unit 3 ‐ Developing Musical Understanding. A focus on listening to familiar music and understanding how it works.

Unit 4 ‐ Extended Performance: Students will need to prepare a performance lasting between 12 and 15 minutes.

Unit 5 ‐ Composition and Technical Study: Students will compose one composition and write one technical study such as Bach 4 part harmony during the course.

Unit 6 ‐ Further Musical Understanding: There are three sections: Aural analysis, Music in Context and Continuity and Change in Instrumental music. Set works from the anthology are the focus for the first two sections, with work on writing chords in the third section.

Entry requirements

A minimum of 5 grade A* - CGCSEs including English Language and mathematics

At least  grade B in GCSE Music , and performance skills to at least grade 5


Unit 1, 2 and 3: externally examined: performing, composing and developing musical understanding.

Unit 4, 5, 6: all externally examined modules: performing, composing and further musical understanding

Future opportunities

Possible entry to university to study music, music technology or performing arts courses. Other options lead to teaching, performing or any area of the music entertainment business.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Holcombe Grammar School directly.

Last updated date: 24 November 2014
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 year at AS, 1 year at A2