Music Beyond Choir
In addition to their rich education in choral music through their 20 hours a week of choir rehearsals, services, and concerts, the boys deepen their musical knowledge and skills with weekly instrumental and voice lessons as well as music theory classes.
All students study an instrument during their time at the Choir School. This may be one they have studied previously, or one that is entirely new to them. Weekly individual lessons are taught by professional musicians contracted by the school.
Each week all students have an individual lesson with the school’s vocal teacher. The lessons focus on technique and repertoire from the choir as well as the ABRSM vocal exams (see below). The vocal teacher works collaboratively with the Choirmaster to help make sure each boy is reaching his full potential both as a member of the choir and as an individual performer.
The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music exams are held every year and proctored by an ABRSM representative at the Choir School. All boys take these vocal and instrumental exams as a way to measure their progress by an internationally-recognized standard. The Choir School helps to thoroughly prepare each and every student for these exams. Practice periods held during the academic schedule Monday-Friday allow the students to prepare by practicing techniques learned in their vocal and instrumental lessons. Learn more about the ABRSM here.
The best way to become comfortable with performance is to perform! When the boys are proficient with their ABRSM instrumental repertoire they play for the visiting parents at recitals held following Sunday lunches. Vocal recitals are regularly scheduled during weekday lunches, where the boys sing for the school. These performances offer a chance for the boys to show off their individual musical skills to their parents, teachers, and friends.
The Music Theory curriculum is designed to complement the music that is sung at Saint Thomas Church and to aid the students in their extracurricular musical studies. Read more about the Music Theory curriculum here.