Prerequisites: Satisfactory score on a music skills placement test and teacher permission
Required Tools: Instrumentalists must have their own instrument at home with the exception of percussionists, who should have the core instruments (snare and bells) at home but can use the school's percussion inventory to diversify their recital program.
Additional Fees: Though not a school fee, private music lessons on a student's primary instrument or voice must be taken through the senior year PRESENTING recital. IB assessment fees will be incurred in the second year of the course.
This is the first year of a two-year course that examines music with regard to several distinct functions: music used for worship, sociocultural and/or national/political reasons; music used for dramatic impact to support movement/dance, theater, film, video games, and other media; music developed largely or completely through electronic/technological means; and music with a foremost purpose to be a listening experience.
The course helps students develop 3 roles required for comprehensive musicianship:
(1) RESEARCHER - Students conduct analyses yielding scholarly written observations about both musical (melody, rhythm, harmony, form...) and extra-musical (time period, societal context/function ...) aspects of works encompassing a wide variety of styles. (Popular, World, Art Music -"Classical", Hybrid works mixing these styles) Students will investigate music with which they are either somewhat or even completely unfamiliar as well as works they know well.
(2) CREATOR - Students compose, arrange and improvise music using style/genre guidelines.
(3) PERFORMER -Students through their voices, instruments, and/or technology bring musical works into sound realizations.
Students learn by frequent critical listening and analysis of musical works. The findings of their research inform the subsequent Creating and Performing activities.
This course is a year-long elective for juniors. Students who would like to develop their musical skills to a high level, especially those who are considering a career in any music-related field should take this course. Key skills are the ability to listen critically and express findings from analysis (both in class discussion and in writing) and to work both independently and in collaboration with peers. It is important that students approach all studied music with an open mind and seek to understand both the emotional and intellectual aspects that are present in all well-crafted musical works.
Students must take private instruction with a qualified instructor on her/his instrument or voice through the senior year PRESENTING recital. Interested students should contact the instructor to arrange for an inventory of musical concepts no later than the end of their freshman year.
Units of Study
Elements of Music 1: Melody, Rhythm & Harmony
Elements of Music 2: Texture, Dynamics, Articulations, Timbre
Structure: Musical Organization
Major, Minor & Blues Scales and Derived Chords
Music for Social Discourse: Reggae, Rock, Hip Hop, West African Jeli Music, Blues
Electronic Dance Music around the World: American/European & World Hybrids
Synthetic Sound-source Film & Video Game Scoring
Key changing Theory: Dominant & Diminished Triads/7th Chords
Multi-section Writing: Vocal or Instrumental Solo w/Piano Accompaniment
Music for Dance: Zydeco, Waltz, African Benga, Cuban Son, Ballet
Music for Worship: Chorales, Mass, Spirituals, Indigenous Ceremonial Music
Soundscape Creation: Experimental Music Using 'Found' and/or Electronic Sounds
Far Eastern Theater: Japanese Kabuki, Cantonese Opera, Indonesian Wayang Kulit
Modern Era Writing: 12-Tone, Extended Chords, Quartals/Quintals, Clusters