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Music A Level at Liverpool College

Course description

At both Advanced Subsidiary Levels (AS) and A2, pupils experience all three main musical disciplines of performing, composing and listening and understanding. Pupils will develop performance skills (solo and/or ensemble), compose music and learn about harmony (the basics at AS and stylistic studies at A2). They will build up their aural and analytical skills by studying selections from the New Anthology of Music.

Course content

AS UNIT 1 Performing (30%)
This unit gives pupils the opportunities to perform as soloists and/or as part of an ensemble. Teachers and pupils can choose music in any style. Any instrument(s) and/or voice(s) are acceptable as part of a five-six minute assessed performance. Notated and/or improvised performances may be submitted.

AS UNIT 2 Composing (30%)
This unit encourages pupils to develop their composition skills leading to the creation of a threeminute piece in response to a chosen brief. Pupils also write a CD sleeve note to describe aspects of their final composition and explain how other pieces of music have influenced it.

AS UNIT 3 Developing Musical Understanding (40%)
This unit focuses on listening to familiar music and understanding how it works. Set works from the anthology provide the focus for the first two sections, through listening and studying scores. It is recommended that pupils familiarise themselves with each work as a whole, before learning how to identify important musical features and social and historical context. In the third section, pupils use a score to identify harmonic and tonal features and then apply this knowledge in the completion of a short and simple passage for SATB.

A2 UNIT 4 Extended Performance (30%)
This unit gives pupils with opportunities to extend their performance skills as soloists and/or as part of an ensemble. Teachers and pupils can choose music in any style. Any instrument(s) and/or voice(s) are acceptable as part of a 12-15 minute assessed performance of a balanced programme of music. Notated and/or improvised performances may be submitted.

A2 UNIT 5 Composition and Technical Study (30%)
This unit has two sections: composition and technical study. The composition section further develops pupils‟ composition skills, leading to the creation of a final three-minute piece in response to a chosen brief. The technical study section builds on the knowledge and awareness of harmony gained in Unit 3 section C through the medium of pastiche studies. Pupils must complete two tasks in this unit choosing from either one composition and one technical study or two compositions or two technical studies.

A2 UNIT 6 Further Musical Understanding (40%)
Set works from the anthology provide the focus for much of the unit. It is recommended that pupils familiarise themselves with each work as a whole, before concentrating on important musical features, context and/or elements of continuity and change. Between works pupils should also listen to a wide range of unfamiliar music which relates to the two compulsory areas of study. They should learn how to compare and contrast pairs of excerpts, contextualise music and identify harmonic and tonal features.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Liverpool College directly.

Last updated date: 25 June 2015

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