The Music Department offers a wide range of experiences both in the classroom and as part of the extra-curricular programme too. Enjoyment of music-making is central to the work of the department and the key motivation for pupils getting involved.
Music: Nursery to T1
With dedicated specialist staff from Nursery upwards Music in the Junior School is always fun as we focus on practical music making. Singing is a very important part of the music curriculum, and we also begin to introduce untuned percussion instruments in Nursery. In Junior 1 and beyond we gradually add in tuned percussion, recorder and ukulele.
Children are encouraged to explore sound, starting with sound journeys in Junior 1 and moving on to composing simple tunes and beginning to notate them by the start of Transitus.
There are many opportunities for the children to take part in a variety of performances with class assemblies, an annual Nativity for the youngest and shows for the older children, as well as the Christmas service and the end of year concert.
Music: T2 (P7) to S2
Moving up the school, from T2 to S2 Music classes learn a gradually expanding list of musical concepts which are experienced through a mix of practical, creative and listening activities. Topics include Samba, Rock’n’Roll, Programme Music, Pulsation, Gamelan, Scottish Music, Musicals, Improvisation & Film Music.
Pupils are encouraged wherever possible to perform and create on their own instruments (if they are receiving tuition) and to explore tuned percussion, keyboard, ukulele, the iPad and the voice.
Music: S3 to S6
Building on the foundation laid by the end of S2, pupils who opt to study Music further at National 5, and beyond to Higher or Advanced Higher will explore progressively more sophisticated musical concepts and further develop their creative and solo performing abilities.
The aim of these courses is to provide pupils with a wide range of Performing, Listening and Composing experiences, encouraging creativity across all skills. Pupils should also have a love of listening to music and be open to many different styles beyond their own particular favourites.
Ensembles & Concerts
The Department is a busy place during the week with many activities including: 2 choirs, an orchestra, a traditional music group, the clarsach ensemble, the clarinet and saxophone ensemble, the jazz ensemble, and a flute choir. As well as the major annual school events of the Junior and Senior Carol Services and Junior and Senior Concerts later in the session, the Department also receives many invitations for these groups to perform both locally and further afield. Most years there is also a senior show. Recent productions have included Guys & Dolls (2017), Grease (2015), High School Musical (2013) and Thoroughly Modern Millie (2012).
Encouraging our musicians to stretch themselves in solo performing, the Music Competition in Spring Term is open to any pupil in S1-S6 with awards for both Instrumental and Vocal performances and an additional award for the best Traditional Music performance. In recent years we have also enjoyed considerable success in the Rotary Young Musician of the Year competition.