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A-Level Music

A-Level Mathematics

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The Knights Templar Music Department is a vibrant and exciting place to be. We are committed to delivering a high quality curriculum, as well as offering our students the best possible music-making opportunities. 
Our aim is to deliver Music as an academic subject which fosters a variety of skills. All of our students are encouraged to be creative as well as disciplined in their approach to theory and analysis.

Our results are consistently good at examination level with many students going on to study at University or Music College.

Courses Offered

A Level Music (Edexcel)

Syllabus Breakdown

Unit 1 - performing
Externally Assessed (30%)

  • A public performance of one or more pieces, performed as a recital.

  • Performance can be playing or singing solo, in an ensemble, improvising, or realising music using music technology.

  • The total performance time across all pieces must be a minimum of eight minutes.

Unit 2 - composing
Externally Assessed (30%)

  • Total of two compositions, one to a brief set by the exam board and one either free composition or also to a brief.

  • One composition must be from either a list of briefs related to the areas of study, or a free composition, carrying 40 marks for this component. This composition must be at least four minutes in duration.

  • One composition must be from a list of briefs assessing compositional technique, carrying 20 marks for this component. This composition must be at least one minute in duration, unless the brief specifies a longer minimum duration.

  • Total time across both submissions must be a minimum of six minutes.

Unit 3 - appraising
Written exam 2 hours (40%)

  • Knowledge and understanding of musical elements, contexts and language.

  • Application of knowledge through the context of six areas of study, each with three set works.

    • Vocal Music,

    • Instrumental Music,

    • Music for Film,

    • Popular Music and Jazz,

    • Fusions,

    • New Directions.

    • Application of knowledge to unfamiliar works.

The areas of study are: Vocal Music, Instrumental Music, Music for Film, Popular Music and Jazz, Fusions, New Directions.

Minimum Entry Requirements

It is useful to have Music at GCSE, but this is not essential as long as you can already play a musical instrument and are able to read music. Grade 5 theory from ABRSM is also an advantage. All students must meet our general Sixth Form entry requirements of five GCSEs at grade 4 or above.

Why Study This Subject?

We believe that studying Music at A level offers students not only a rigorous academic experience, but also widens students’ musical horizons, offering them practical opportunities to develop and grow as musicians and young people.

Wider Opportunities

The Knights Templar Music Department offers a variety of workshops and concerts throughout the year. We organise regular visits to see live music; recently including trips to London’s Royal Albert Hall, The Royal Festival Hall and live opera screenings at Letchworth’s Broadway Cinema. 

Every two years, we put on a Musical production, in partnership with the Drama Department: Fiddler on the Roof was performed in 2016 and The Wizard of Oz was performed in 2018. In addition, a European Tour is organised every two years; to Barcelona in 2016 and to Prague in 2018. 

Music students are encouraged to take full advantage of the wealth of extra-curricular ensembles on offer at Knights Templar School. These include Orchestra, Wind Band, Brass Band, Jazz Band, Chamber Choir, Guitar Ensemble and String Ensemble. 

We encourage our musicians to become Music Prefects, in order for them to develop their leadership skills, help out with extra-curricular activities and gain experience in the classroom with the lower years. We also provide opportunities for any student wishing to develop skills in conducting. 

We offer various ways for students to keep in touch and follow music department news, events and performances. We have a department Twitter account @music_kts which we encourage all our students to follow. 

What Our Students Say:

“A level music was a fantastic course and one that is so stimulating in so many different, yet vital aspects of music. Within the course I am convinced that every musician will be stretched and learn things they didn’t even know existed. I couldn’t recommend music at KTS more highly. It has been a privilege to be part of this department.”

“Music at KTS fully prepared me for University. A level music challenged my skills and moved my learning forward in ways I never expected. The staff are committed to getting the students the highest results possible.” 

"One of the main reasons I moved to Knights Templar for sixth form was because of the music department.
I would like to thank the staff for their excellent teaching, friendly approach and support during my time at KTS”.

What Can I Do Next?

Many of our students go on to study Music performance or composition at university or Music College.

Music is a very versatile subject providing students with skills that employers require when looking to recruit well rounded individuals. Due to the nature of the subject musicians can demonstrate team work, communication and performing in front of others, analytical skills, working to deadlines and many technology skills to name a few.

Careers in Music:

Musician, Artist Management, Composing, Teaching, Music Therapy, Musicologist, Publishing and Production.