Prep – Middle School Music
The Year 6 instrumental music program always brings about big change for our Prep boys. The boys start learning band instruments in September and, over four months, have progressed to a good fundamental understanding. From learning to read the musical language, to applying that knowledge to playing their instruments, there is always interesting sounds coming from the basement at the Prep. As of January, we have now added an 87-member band environment to their curricular program and have been learning what it is like to play — as part of the ultimate team experience. There has also been an exciting new opportunity for the boys to audition and be part of the Year 6 Jazz Ensemble and learn a whole other musical language as part of their early development. These experiences will culminate with public performances on Wednesday, May 8th as part of Grandparents Day and the Spring Music Night. Currently, the boys are knee deep learning about the history of their instruments, creating artistic representations of them, researching professional performers and using their newly developed listening ability to study, analyze and identify creativity in various genres of music and display varieties of written methods within this extensive music project.
The music program began with incorporating 41 new boys into the Year 7 curriculum with the master class and extra-help sessions. Then, we were quick to introduce the boys to the co-curricular band world with a 41-member Concert Band and a 21-member Jazz Ensemble that saw boys auditioning for positions in the group. The curricular program sees a mixture of learning the written language of music, technical development on their instruments and performing band repertoire of various cultures to progress the boys’ application of technical skills with the addition of emotional and stylistic fundamentals. Throughout the curriculum, we dive into the planning and reflection process to understand a deeper meaning of musical terminology and ask questions. What are our strengths? What can we continue to develop? How are we going to get to the next level? How can we verify what we do? The new year saw us begin with a flourish of activities challenging ourselves to go higher, faster, and further develop our technical fundamentals reaching new heights of performance capability. The boys are now involved in an extensive 10-week project studying a composer from various musical eras, analyzing their works and applying increasingly developing listening capabilities, and will culminate with writing and performing of their very own musical composition. We will end the year with fun and exciting repertoire choices that apply numerous fundamentals developed throughout the year.