"Music has the power of producing a certain effect on the moral character of the soul, and if it has the power to do this, it is clear that the young must be directed to music and must be educated in it."
Aristotle (384 - 322 BC)
An introduction to music - practical music making and development of aural (listening) skills are at the centre of the Year 7 curriculum. Topics include: Instruments of the Orchestra; The Elements of Music; Rhythmn and Staff Notation; Instrumental Performance and Meloday Writing.
The Year 8 curriculum develops basic musical skills introduced in Year 7 and introduces music from around the world. Pupils listen, compose and perform these using these topics as a stimulus. Pupils create compositions using instruments and are encouraged to explore the creation of melodies through improvisation.
The Year 9 curriculum focuses on music genres including The Blues and Rock & Roll and Ground Bass and Dance Music. Pupils build on jass improvisation and study 12 Bar Blues. Year 9 pupils have the opportunity to use Sibelius 4 notation software to compose.
The GCSE Syllabus (Edexel) can be followed in Years 10 and 11. Last year's pupils gained 100% A*-B grades.
The School offers private lessons on a variety of instruments and subjects: violin, viola, cello, double bass, guitar, bass guitar, recorder, flute, clarinet, saxophone, trumpet, trombone, tuba, French horn, drum kit, orchestral percussion, piano, jazz piano, voice, theory of music and composition.
Helena McKillop, Head of Music, joined the School in September 2011, having trained at the Birmingham Conservatoire, Sweelinck Conservatoire in Amsterdam and the University of Central England.
James Crackle teaches flute and recorder and A Level Music. After graduating he continued his research with a Masters. Mr Crackle has performed in a variety of ensembles, including orchestras, wind quintets, wind bands, instrumental and vocal choirs and flute quartets.
Jamie Cranfield studied at Reading University, Thames Valley University and The Guitar Institute in London and has played guitar for 25 years. Mr Cranfield teaches a variety of styles including Classical, Jazz, Rock, Country and Blues.
Nicola Gawthrop taught contemporary voice and piano in the South East for ten years after graduating from Colchester Institute. Mrs Gawthrop works as a freelance vocalist and is Musical Director for Peterborough Young Singers.
Steve Hamper studied percussion at The Royal Military School of Music, Kneller Hall and currently directs the Percussion Group and Jazz Ensemble as well as teaching percussion.
Martin Jewkes teaches piano, saxophone and clarinet. He teaches a variety of styles including Jazz, Rock, Pop and Classical.
Anthea McAuliffe studied under Howard Davies and has over 10 years' experience in teaching the violin to all ages. Mrs McAuliffe maintains an active professional performing career through her post as founder member and leader of the Intermezzo String Quartet.
Louise Reid read music at Oxford, as the Organ Scholar of Lincoln College, and subsequently studied organ and choral conducting at The Royal Academy of Music. She also held the post of Organ Scholar at Westminster Abbey. Louise studied singing at The Royal Academy of Music and was a member of The Schola Cantorum of Oxford, Westminster Abbey Special Service Choir and Philharmonia Voices.
Ian Stafford has taught piano at The Peterborough School for many years as well as accompanying the Prep Choir. Mr Stafford is a member of The Cathedral Singers at Peterborough Cathedral.
Alan Steel is a pianist, organist, singer, composer and teacher. For many years Mr Steel was Musical Director of The Havering Music Makers and also a lay vicar at Westminster Abbey. He is now a member of the choir of St Alban the Martyr, Holborn. Mr Steel is the School accompanist and also Musical Director of the annual School musical.
Senior School Extra Curricular Music Groups
Orchestra conducted by Mrs McKillop is open to players of Grade 2 and above. They perform a wide variety of music from classical to the more contemporary.
Senior and Junior Chapel Choirs are led by Mrs Reid. They sing at the regular Thursday morning Eucharist in the Chapel and have opportunities to represent the School at a number of outside engagements. The Junior Chapel Choir is open to boys and girls from Years 7-9. Pupils are welcome who want to develop their voices and musicianship. No previous singing experience is necessary.
Vocale is conducted by Mrs Gawthrop and is open to all students in Years 7-13 and focuses on singing contemporary music.
Jazz Ensemble is a small gruop of very able musicians who rehearse once a week under the directorship of Mr Hamper.
Consort Group takes place on Fridays and concentrates on music from the Baroque and Early Classical periods.
Guitar Ensemble is a small group of guitarists who meet once a week and work on a variety of pieces mostly arranged by Mr Cranfield.
Junior and Senior String Ensembles rehearse every week with Mrs McAuliffe.
Traverso is the name of the flute ensemble who rehearse on Fridays after School. Mr Crackle rehearses the students and arranges the music to suit the different abilities within this ensemble.
Percussion Ensemble is led by Mr Hamper and have delighted audiences at a number of concerts with their skilled stick work. The group meets weekly on a Tuesday.
Senior Soul Band, Junior Soul Band and Baby Band are run by Mr Cranfield. They perform at a number of concerts and play a wide variety of music as well as giving pupils the opportunity to perform music of their own choice.