Formal music education starts in Grade 8 with an introductory course which all boys take. They are taught the basics of music notation, and implement their knowledge by using music notation software to compose their first masterpiece.
In grade 9 our class is refined into the strongest group of budding musicians from the previous year, to form a music elective class in which music performance is the main focus, with peripherals such as music theory and history being covered in a rudimentary way. The use of music software to compose, record and sequence music is further developed.
Full subject music is only offered in the FET phase (Grade 10 – 12), but our students are generally well equipped to handle the subject after the Grade 9 music elective year. The IEB music curriculum is significantly different to that of the Department of Education, with more emphasis on holistic music knowledge, appreciation and performance, which encourage critical thinking and a better understanding of abstract musical concepts.
Entry requirements for subject music (FET):
An interview with the music staff determines the candidate’s suitability to take the subject. Minimum requirements (loosely followed) are Theory Grade 2 and Practical Grade 3 completed before entering the FET phase. In the final year (Grade 12) we encourage all students to perform at Grade 7 level (with theory at Grade 6 level) or higher.
Various subject outings are undertaken each year. Previous events include a visit to East Coast Radio to discuss music playlist policies, artist airtime, royalties, music industry and careers in radio; visits to the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra dress rehearsals, the Barnyard Theatre and the Elisabeth Sneddon Theatre and attending various master classes.
Our department prides itself in providing the best in additional instruction through regular master classes from local and international artists/educators:
2009 – Nibs van der Spuy, SA (guitar)
2010 – Prof Svein Bjørkuy, Norway (voice)
2011 – Prof Pierre vd Westhuizen & Sophia Grobler, USA (piano)
2011 – Jacques le Roux, Austria (voice)
2011 – Francois le Roux, SA (improvisation)
2012 – Magesh Ngcobo, SA (African Movement/Dancing)
2013 – Jacques Imbrailo, UK (voice)
2013 – Prof. Antoinette Lohmann, NL (Baroque Violin)
2014 – Charon Williams-Ros, SA (Jazz Vocals)
2014 – Mandla Matsha, SA (African Drumming/Percussion)
2014 – Avi Mackenjee, SA (DJ/Music Production)
2015 – Samantha Landers & Tammy Saville, SA (Musical Theatre)
2015 – Derek de Beer, Canada (Drum Kit/Percussion)
2015 – Hendrik Joerges, SA (DJ/Music Production)