Music

“Musical ability is not an inborn talent but an ability which can be developed. Any child who is properly trained can develop musical ability, just as all children develop the ability to speak their mother tongue. The potential of every child is unlimited”   Shinichi Suzuki

The Music Department is a vibrant and busy part of life at Brooke Priory, with specialist staff teaching curriculum music, whole class instrumental lessons and providing opportunities for music making for all the children from Kindergarten to Form VI.

 

Classroom Music

Music is an integral part of life at Brooke Priory, with specialist subject teaching ensuring that all pupils receive the highest possible standard of music education. Curriculum music is an opportunity for children to experience a wide variety of musical styles; listen, compose and perform together to develop confidence and a life-long love of music.

All pupils throughout the school have a weekly class music lesson built into their timetable. Whole class instrumental lessons in Forms I, II and IV mean that every child can experience the joy of learning a musical instrument, as well the related skills of listening, performing with others and musical discipline. Prep pupils build on the skills learned further down the school, learning to use more advanced musical vocabulary and further developing their composing and performing skills. Pupils explore a wide variety of musical genres and their cultural and social contexts. Through topics including Machine Music, Reggae, , The Blues, Soundscapes, Music for Dance, The Music of World War 2, they acquire skills in composing and performing with a variety of instruments and singing, as well as developing listening skills and a strong musical vocabulary. Recent workshops given by visiting specialists have included Body Percussion, Samba Drumming and Indonesian Gamelan.

 

Extra-curricular opportunities

All pupils have the opportunity to receive individual musical tuition in a variety of disciplines, and the wide range of school ensembles gives everyone the chance to play or sing with others. During the school week there are scheduled rehearsals for Junior and Senior Choirs and the school ensemble. Regular concerts, after school recitals, performance assemblies and trips to senior schools for orchestral days and choir festivals give the children the chance to showcase their skills, develop self-confidence and perform to a wider audience. The following groups meet weekly:

Carried Along – baby and toddler music group
Form I – Whole class recorders
Form II – Whole class violin lessons
Form II – Whole class recorders
Forms III – IV Junior Choir

Form IV – Whole class ukulele lessons
Forms V – VI Senior Choir
Forms III – VI Brooke Priory Ensemble
Forms IV-VI – Brooke Chamber Choir

Pupils are also able to showcase their skills in annual productions, experiencing the thrill of acting, singing and dancing with their peers. In 2022 the Form 3 & 4 production was Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat. Forms 5 & 6 rose to the challenge of performing Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.

Singing is highly valued at Brooke Priory and all pupils have opportunities to sing weekly, whether it be at whole-school assemblies, in Junior or Senior Choir, Chamber Choir or in class music lessons. We also attend annual Prep School Music Days at Oakham and Uppingham Schools.

The music department produces a full and exciting calendar every year. Some of the many highlights include: The Christmas Carol Service; Grandparents Concert; termly stay and play recitals and the Prep and Pre-Prep Summer Concerts.

 

Individual tuition

We are fortunate to have a wonderful team of peripatetic music teachers at Brooke Priory. Lessons are 30 minutes long, and the timetable is rotated each week so that pupils do not miss the same lesson too often.

Tuition is available on the following instruments:

Strings: Violin, Cello

Woodwind: Recorder, Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Saxophone

Brass: Trumpet, Cornet, French Horn

Percussion: Drum kit

Piano

Singing (classical and contemporary)

Paired lessons are also available on some instruments. Pupils can work towards grades (ABRSM or Trinity) or choose to progress in a more natural way, without the pressure of exams. The talents of our musicians are always carefully monitored in case there is the potential to become a music scholar for future schools and we have had several students who have gone on to be awarded scholarships at prestigious schools such as Oakham and Uppingham.

 

Music at Brooke Priory