Welcome to AGGS Music!
The Music Department at AGGS is a diverse and vibrant place in which students of all abilities and backgrounds are celebrated and can flourish musically and with independence.
The Music Department comprises two full time Music staff and one part time Music teacher. These are assisted by 14 visiting teachers who teach a range of orchestral instruments. In addition, saxophone, acoustic guitar, voice, piano and percussion are taught.
Each pupil has three lessons per cycle in Y7 and Y8 and 2 lessons per cycle in Y9. The subject then becomes optional at GCSE and A Level.
Concerts take place each term at school and concerts typically showcase approximately 200 students performing. Our choirs and orchestras have performed with other schools and we have occasionally commissioned music from a variety of composers, for example on School Hymn, set to student lyrics.
In the past, we have organised a Music Tour at the end of the Summer Term. Destinations have included the Rhine, Spain, France, Germany, Italy, China and the English cathedrals of Salisbury and Durham. Every 2-3 years, Music, Drama and Dance Departments combine to produce a Musical. Past productions have included ‘Annie’ and ‘The Wizard of Oz’ and â€˜Oliverâ€™.
2021 – 22 Extracurricular Music
Music making across year groups is now fully back at AGGS!
During the pandemic, the Music department offered year-group led ensembles and rehearsed a socially distanced Jazz Band, Chamber Choir and String Orchestra. We were very pleased to showcase a fully online Christmas Concert and Summer Serenade with donations going to the charity Help Musicians.
|Ukulele Band||Mon||12.30 – 13.00||Room 10||Â|
|GCSE/A level composition help||Mon||12.30 – 13.00||Room 9||Ms Mayall|
|Jazz Band||Mon||15.30 – 16:45||Room 9 or
Main Hall if free
|Saxophone Ensemble||Tue||12.30 – 13.00||Room 10||Miss McCallum|
|Junior Choir (Y7, 8 and 9)||Tue||12.30 – 13.10||Church Hall||Mrs Boyd|
|Recorder Ensemble||Tue||12.30 – 13.00||Room 10||Year 11|
|Chamber Choir (Y9 and above)||Tue||15.30 – 16.30||Main Hall||Ms Mayall|
|Flute Ensemble||Wed||12.30 – 13.00||Room 10||Year 11|
|First Orchestra||Wed||15.30 – 16.30||Main Hall||Ms Mayall|
|Folk Band||Wed||12.30 – 13.00||Room 10||Year 11|
|Second Orchestra||Thu||12.30 – 13.10||Room 9||Miss Wright|
|â€˜Choral Reefâ€™ vocal groupÂ||Thu||1.00 – 1.30||Room 10||Student led|
|Wind Band||Fri||12.30 – 13.00||Room 9||Year 11|
|Junior Strings||Fri||12.30 – 13.00||Room 10Â||Year 12|
|Brass Ensemble||Fri||13.00 – 13.25||Room 9||Year 11|
|String Orchestra||Fri||15.30 – 16:30||Main Hall||Mrs Janes|
|Guitar Ensemble||Fri||13.00 – 13.25||Room 10||Student Led|
|Â||Please see Ms Mayall if you would like to form a new student-led music ensemble|
Instrumental lessons are now all taking place as face to face lessons.
Follow AGGS Music Department online:
AGGS Music News:
Key Stage 3 – Year 7-9
Each Y7 and Y8 pupil has three periods per cycle at this level. Topics covered include aspects of western and nonâ€“western classical music, popular music and jazz, and world music (Indonesia, India and Latin America).
Y9 pupils have two periods of music per cycle. Topics covered include composing and listening to film music, and analysing and composing pop songs.
We have 20 computers equipped with â€˜Sibeliusâ€™ software and Music scores which gives an introduction to music technology and assists with composition. All students use the Music Listening Software ‘Focus on Sound’ to support their learning.
All students in Key-stage 3 are encouraged to join Junior/Senior Choir and any of the many instrumental ensembles available. Many students in Y10 and above lead Student Ensembles.
Outreach Projects Which Link with the KS3 Curriculum
Year 7: Attending a HallÃ© Orchestral Concert at the Bridgewater Hall.
Year 8: Opera workshop.
Year 9: Song writing workshop.
Key Stage 4 – GCSE
Understanding Music (40%)
This unit is based on 4 areas of study, with 4 topic areas within each AOS:
AOS 1 Western Classical Tradition 1650-1910
AOS 2 Popular Music
AOS 3 Traditional Music
AOS 4 Western Classical Tradition since 1910
One Listening exam takes place in June of Y11 year. Externally assessed.
Performing Music (30%)
One solo and one ensemble are recorded in Y11 and the complete performance must last 4 minutes minimum.
Composing music (30%)
2 pieces of music are composed in Y10/Y11.
One in response to a brief sent in September Y11.
The other is a free composition.
2 pieces together last no less than 3 minutes.
* Sibelius Software is used to write both compositions and student must submit a composing log also. GCSE and A-Level students use ‘I Can Compose’ software which comprehensively supports their composing learning.
Key Stage 5 – A Level
Full A level MUSIC (AQA) – AGGS pathway
Component 1: Appraising music (40%)
- Contextual understanding
How it’s assessed
- Exam paper with listening and written questions using excerpts of music.
- Section A: Listening (56 marks)
- Section B: Analysis (34 marks)
- Section C: Essay (30 marks)
Areas of Study
Area of Study 1: Western Classical Tradition
- Strand A: Baroque solo concerto
- Strand B: The operas of Mozart
- Strand C: The piano music of Chopin, Brahms and Grieg
Area of Study 4: Music for Theatre/Music for Media
Component 2: Performance (35%)
How it’s assessed
Solo and/or ensemble performing as an instrumentalist, or vocalist and/or music production (via technology).
A minimum of ten minutes of performance in total is required (no more than twelve minutes).
This component will be externally marked by AQA examiners.
Component 3: Composition (25%)
How it’s assessed
- Composition 1: Composition to a brief (25 marks)
- Composition 2: Free composition (25 marks)
A minimum of four and a half minutes of music in total is required (no more than six minutes).
This component is worth 25% of A-level marks (50 marks in total).
This component will be externally marked by AQA examiners. Work must be completed by 31 May and sent by post/uploaded to AQA.
* The AQA specification is taught.
* Both Sibelius and Musescore software are used in our keyboard suite. Focus on sound and landscape are used extensively by students to support their learning.
* GCSE and A-Level students use ‘I Can Compose’ software which comprehensively supports their composing learning.
To see our latest exam results please go to our results area on the website or click here.