A Level Music What’s it all about?
Why study A Level Music? • A good mixture between academic study and practical creativity • Can compliment the more rigorous ‘behind a desk’ subjects • Universities/Colleges like students to have a balance between academic and creative subjects • Gives you great experience of standing in front of an audience, conquering nerves and delivering a performance – in most jobs these days you have give presentations to a variety of people • It’s fun and there are lots of sweets!
Why study A Level Music at Heathside School? • Strong academic results (100% A-E grades) • Small class sizes help students achieve their potential • Greater chance of course being tailored to suit your needs and interests • Very good music specific IT resources • Active extra-curricular programme • Fantastic teachers! (+ lots of sweets)
An A Level Music student is expected to… • Perform solos and in ensembles in school concerts and other community events • Develop their own compositional style and technique • Apply musical knowledge and understanding in a variety of contrasting situations and environments • Play a key role in the extra-curricular activities of the Music Department
A strong A Level Music candidate will: • be working at a minimum of Grade 5 on their instrument; • have had some experience of theory up to Grade 5 level; • be receiving regular instrumental lessons; • have an interest in different styles of music and have an ‘open mind’ about new styles of music; • have an interest in developing musical skills, especially in composition; • have achieved at least a B grade at GCSE Music.
AS Units (Year 12) Unit 1 – Performing (30%) (15%) Unit 2 – Composing (30%) (15%) Unit 3 – Developing Musical Understanding (40%) (20%) A2 Units (Year 13) Unit 4 – Extended Performance (15%) Unit 5 – Composition and/or Technical Study (15%) Unit 6 – Further Musical Understanding (20%)
AS Unit 1 – Performing • Solo and/or ensemble (maximum of 5 players) • Any style of music and any instrument/voice • 5-6 minute Recital in March • Notated and/or improvised • Grade 5 or above
AS Unit 2 – Composing • 1 composition • Minimum of 3-minute piece • Choice of 4 topics set by Edexcel • Produce a written commentary of the composition, suitable for a sleeve cover on a CD • To be completed in controlled conditions (16 hours)
AS Unit 3Developing Musical Understanding • For this section of the course, students study a number of set works throughout the year from different periods of music. • Students are assessed by a 2-hour exam divided into 3 sections: • Section A: Listening (based on the set works) • Section B: Investigating Musical Styles (essay writing based on the set works) • Section C: Understanding Chords & Lines (how chords and cadences work)
The set works for AS Music for 2012/13 are… • Debussy — Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune • Reich — New York Counterpoint • Poulenc — Sonata for Horn, Trumpet and Trombone • Mozart — Piano Sonata in B flat • Tavener — The Lamb • Dowland — Flow my tears • Monteverdi — Ohimè, se tanto amate • Schubert — Der Doppelgänger • Howlin’ Wolf — I’m leavin’ you • Van Morrison — Tupelo Honey
A2 Music ComponentsA2 Unit 4 – Extended Performance • Solo and/or ensemble • Any style of music and any instrument/voice • 12 – 15 minutes recital • Grade 6 or above
A2 Unit 5Composition and/or Technical Study • Choice of either completing: • 2 compositions • 1 composition and 1 Technical Study • 2 Technical Studies • Composition briefs and Technical Studies set by Edexcel in September • Technical studies: Baroque Counterpoint, Bach Chorale and Popular Song • To be completed in controlled conditions – 14 hours per composition and 3 hours per technical study the Course
A2 Unit 6 Further Musical Understanding • Studying of different set works in greater detail. • Assessed by a 2-hour exam divided into 3 sections • Section A: Aural analysis (assessing listening/analytical skills) • Section B: Music in Context (short questions) • Section C: Continuity and Change in Instrumental Music (essay writing)
ANY QUESTIONS? • Speak to Mr Mac • Have a look at the Music Department Website