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AS/A MUSIC at Peter Symonds College

Course description

This course is designed for students who enjoy music and want to develop their skills in performing, composing, listening and writing about music. Students can pursue their preferred style in performing and free composition, while the written paper is based on a range of set works selected from classical, pop, film scores and world music. There are lots of opportunities to play and sing in orchestras, jazz bands and choirs. Many smaller groups (like classical ensembles and rock bands) get a chance to showcase their work in our weekly lunch time concerts. The college provides 30 minutes’ weekly free instrumental/vocal tuition to A level music students with our team of visiting music teachers. There are master classes and workshops given by professional performers, plus trips to a range of live music events.

AS Music has three units:

  • Performing (solo recital of 5-6 minutes at Grade 5 level or above)
  • Composing (one three-minute composition in your own style in response to a chosen brief)
  • Developing Musical Understanding (written paper on set works, listening tests and harmony exercises)

A2 music develops each of these units to a higher level.

The Music Department is situated in beautiful grounds on the College site in a three-story Victorian house. Facilities include practice rooms, computer rooms for composition with Sibelius and three recording studios, as well as the Recital Room and more practice rooms in College Centre.

Entry requirements

5 GCSEs at Grades A* - C including English and Maths plus Grade 5 or above in one instrument or voice. If you have not taken this exam you may be asked to audition in July. You will need the ability to read music scores confidently and therefore we prefer students to have passed Grade 5 Theory. If you do not have this qualification we will ask you to pass a simple notation test at enrolment and take an extra theory class in September. (You will have to pass Grade 5 Theory to progress to A2.) It is also preferable to have taken GCSE Music, but you may still apply without it if you are an experienced musician.

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 20 May 2014

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1/2 years