Music is a fundamental part of life at More House School.
Over three quarters of the school take part in regular musical activities, both at lunchtime and after school. The department enjoys a high profile, both within the school and the wider community, and presents around four significant concerts each year at local venues including Cadogan Hall. The jewel in the department’s crown is the annual Easter Choral Concert, which every year features major large-scale choral works accompanied by a professional orchestra, and featuring soloists taken from the student population. We are the only London day school that takes students on an International music tour every year, and recent trips have included singing in St Patrick’s Cathedral in New York and performing at the Beatification Ceremony for Pope Paul VI at St Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City.
|Director of Music||
Miss E Calderwood - firstname.lastname@example.org
Individual lessons are offered on all the main orchestral instruments as well as singing, piano, guitar and drum kit. More than a third of pupils study one or more of these instruments and over 120 individual music lessons occur each week. Our experienced team of peripatetic music staff prepare girls for ABRSM, Trinity/Guildhall and Rock School examinations as well as providing support for GCSE and A Level performances and concerts.
YEARS 7, 8 AND 9
The Key Stage 3 curriculum is designed to be accessible and enjoyable for students of all abilities, from absolute novices to child prodigies, whilst being excellent preparation for the demands of further study. Students are introduced to the elements of music and basic notation, keyboard and instrumental skills. Singing is a major part of study at Key Stage 3 and all members of year 7 and 8 are members of the Junior Choir (which, for year 7, is a timetabled lesson). We have also recently introduced whole-class instrumental lessons for year 7.
YEARS 10 & 11 - GCSE SYLLABUS (EDEXCEL)
The academic activities of the department continue to thrive and our results at GCSE in particular are strong. As well studying for assessments in performance and composition, the EdExcel syllabus provides students with the opportunity to study music across the last 400 years of the Western Classical Tradition, studying instrumental music from Bach to Beethoven and vocal music from Purcell to Queen! The also study Musicals, Film Music and Fusions of styles from around the world. Each year exam students get the opportunity to present both performance and composition coursework in public at small-scale concerts within the school.
SIXTH FORM - A LEVEL SYLLABUS (EDEXCEL)
Sixth form music students continue to explore music in more depth and complexity expanding their understanding and appreciation for all genres. The AQA course offers flexibility and choice very much in the spirit of More House School as a whole, and in addition to study of the Western Classical tradition students can select optional units ranging from 20th Century Art Music and World Music to Jazz, Pop and musical Theatre. Each year exam students get the opportunity to present both performance and composition coursework in public at small-scale concerts within the school.
Clubs and Activities
Naturally a large part of the department’s work takes place away from academic lessons. The department is very proud of the commitment and dedication displayed by its students and that over three quarters of the school are involved in some form of activity within the department.
Singing is the school’s prized activity and, throughout the school year, 8 different choirs are run. Our premier group is the auditioned Senior Chamber Choir, which takes on extremely difficult repertoire such as, in recent years, Allegri’s Miserere, Mei Deus and Britten’s Hymn to St. Cecilia. The choir play a key role in life at the school and contribute music to whole-school worship at Christmas and Easter, as well as other times of the year. There is also an auditioned Junior Chamber Choir for years 8 and 9, who feature prominently in the Easter Choral concert and many of whom go on to become part of the Senior Chamber Choir.
Un-auditioned choirs at the school include the Junior Choir, which comprises all members of year 7 and 8, and the Senior Choir, which is voluntary for years 9 and above. The Show Choir, exclusive to year 7, is run by one of our Singing Teachers and perform to a very high standard. Away from these regular choirs, the annual International Choir Tour is open to everyone and usually around 50 students take part. For those who enjoy singing on a more informal level, the A Capella club is an opportunity for girls in all year groups to express themselves through music. Finally, the More House Singers is our staff, parent and old-girl choir, who meet on Wednesday evenings in the lead up to performances at the concerts at Christmas, Easter and the Summer.
Instrumental music has developed considerable momentum at the school and the String Group has become one of the school’s most dedicated and accomplished ensembles. For wind and brass players the Band rehearses once a week and perform enjoyable re-retire in the concerts. We also have a Percussion Group and a Guitar Club run by members of our peripatetic team. The school is also privileged to own a full se too Handbells, and senior students of the department gather to play a few tunes with them for the Christmas Concert each year. In year 7, every girl is given the opportunity to study either the violin, the clarinet or the trumpet for the year as part of a timetabled academic lesson. This has proved very successful and is a valuable experience for the students.
The department organises regular trips to make use of the wealth of musical interest in London and further afield. We take a group of singers on an International Choir Tour every year, and recent visits have included Barcelona, Athens, Rome and New York. We arrange regular theatre trips in London, and for the past 2 years have taken year 9 for a backstage tour, singing workshop and matinee performance of Les Misérables. We regularly visit and perform in local churches and concert venues as part of our performance programme, and this year will perform our annual Easter Choral Concert at Cadogan Hall, providing incredible musical experiences for our girls.