In almost every culture throughout history, Music has been an essential part of the human experience. It engages the emotions, stimulates the intellect, enables self-expression and even sometimes provides a welcome escape from reality.
At QE, through both lessons and our many ensembles, we seek to enrich boys by fostering a lifelong enjoyment and appreciation of Music.
The department aims to challenge perceptions of particular styles of Music through study, encouraging pupils to keep an open mind as their tastes and understanding develop.
QE has a strong record of leavers going on to pursue Music in higher education and professionally, but we also recognise that many boys do not take the subject beyond GCSE or A-level. We therefore encourage boys in classes at every level to find their own musical niche in the hope that they will continue to pursue this interest and enjoy listening to, and playing, music throughout their life.
Music is primarily a practical subject. Concepts are, therefore, best understood through active participation in performance and composition. Specialised software is used to aid composing at GCSE and A-level.
Singing is fundamental to the boys’ understanding and enjoyment of music, and is a central feature of lessons all the way through from Year 7 to the Sixth Form.
All of this is invaluable in developing pupils’ general confidence and their skills in presentation. Furthermore, we equip boys with a wide spectrum of skills and attributes that are valued by universities and employers, such as independent learning, teamwork, effective planning and preparation, thinking on the spot, problem-solving, communication, creativity, and analytical and evaluation skills.
The work done in the classroom is supported and enhanced by a comprehensive range of individual instrumental tuition and by our extensive extra-curricular programme.
QE’s ensembles include the Symphony Orchestra, three choirs, barbershop groups and the Jazz Band, as well as chamber ensembles such as the Saxophone group, String Camerata and Indian Music Ensemble. There are also many performance opportunities away from the School, including Music tours and participation in festivals.