Are you passionate about music? Would you like to develop your knowledge, as well as your ability to perform and create music? This course allows you to learn about many different types of classical, jazz, rock and pop music from Wales. You will be encouraged to develop your performing and composing skills, through practical and theoretical work. You will also develop your listening and analytical skills, helping you to engage further with written, performed and recorded music.
The course requires you to have performing skills, to at least grade 3 standard, on a musical instrument or as a singer. You must also be musically literate and able to read music to a good standard.
The course can be taken as part of a full-time programme of study in conjunction with other AS subjects or with a BTEC Diploma at Level 3. The course can also be taken on a part-time basis by mature students. Both an AS Level and a full A Level are available, so after the first year you can choose whether to continue the subject.
This course will build upon the skills established at GCSE and the units follow the same pattern.
Unit 1: Performing With the help of your singing/instrumental teacher you will prepare a recital for your performance exam. This performance will be at grade 5 or above and should last about 6 to 8 minutes. You can perform as a soloist/part of an ensemble or a combination of both. An external examiner will visit college to assess the performances.
Unit 2: Composing You will need to compose two pieces of work for your composition portfolio. The composing process is completed on computers using Sibelius and Apple Logic software. Piece 1 - a classical composition in response to a brief set by WJEC. Piece 2 - a free composition in a style of your choice. The work will be marked externally.
Unit 3: Appraising This unit involves listening to music and the set pieces build upon the work you studied for GCSE. This module deepens and improves your understanding of music. There will be a detailed study of a number of specified pieces of music. These will include examples of both ‘classical’ music and ‘popular’ music. Your knowledge of these pieces and your wider listening skills will be assessed in a final listening test.