Taking place at The Meeting House Muswell Hill (77 Church Crescent, N10 3NE), these group lessons are designed to complement individual tuition children are already having either privately or at school with the purpose of giving them the chance to take part in a weekly small ensemble.
Chamber music is one of the most important experiences for a young musician; it helps develop not only musical ability but also social and team-working skills. We started this project with the idea of giving our private students the opportunity to perform and share learning with their peers, as this could be one of the best motivations to play an instrument!
It’s known that individual lessons are the core of instrumental teaching but they are not enough by themselves; musicianship and ensemble playing are key for a thorough development of the young musician. We also know how hard it is for parents to find enough time for their children to attend individual+musicianship+ensemble+orchestra classes. That’s why we have designed this program in which musicianship and ensemble are integrated in the group lesson, so the one-to-one can be more focused on technique and repertoire.
Regular concerts will be held at the end of every term to share all the work done with families and friends and to give students the opportunity to perform regularly in front of an audience.
What makes us different from other ensembles/orchestras:
· Small groups, up to 10 children per class coached by two teachers. That gives them practically individual attention.
· Ensemble playing + musicianship integrated in one session. Musicianship based on the Kodaly and Dalcroze’s Eurythmics methods: Lots of singing, movement, rhythm-cards activities, etc.
· Apart from standard music, we use simplified notation (sticks and reduced stave). That enables every child to join in from the beginning regardless their reading skills.
· Children grouped by age rather than level as we specialised in working with mixed abilities. We arrange the music to suit each student individually. They always have the opportunity to choose between an easier part to begin with and harder ones to challenge themselves as they see fit.
· From 4 to 16 years old (Early Years to Advanced Strings). Songs learnt from the beginning (singing) are applied to the instrument in different ways later on. By the end of the term they are able to perform some of the pieces together at different levels.
- EARLY STRINGS: singing, movement, mini-percussion, essential aural skills and lots of fun for 4-6 years old. The violin is introduced gradually through games and simple activities. 45 min.
- INITIAL STRINGS: musicianship and ensemble playing for 6-8 years old children. Ideally in Pre-grade 1 standard or similar. 45 min.
- INTERMEDIATE STRINGS: musicianship and ensemble playing for 8-10 years old children. Ideally in Grades 1-3 standard or similar. 45 min.
- ADVANCED STRINGS: musicianship and chamber music for 11+ years old children. Ideally in Grade 3 and above standard or similar. 45 min.
Groups Timetable – THURSDAYS
Learning music not only brings the opportunity to enjoy playing an instrument, it also provides a great development on emotional, cognitive and social skills. We consider ourselves very lucky to have found in music a beautiful way of living and we believe that every child should have at least the chance to try it.
Our teaching methodology follows the principles of the positive approach, always keeping in mind that the ideal learning experience should be based on enjoyment, especially to maintain young students’ energies and concentration.
With young children (from 4 years old) we use a combination of both Kodaly and Dalcroze methods, prioritizing musicianship over technique in these first years of learning. The combination of these two methods allows quick development of aural skills: sense of pulse, rhythm, inner-ear, singing, memory and the capacity of multitasking.
For more advanced students we combine musicianship with a more traditional approach, working with repertoire of great pedagogues such as Wohlfahrt, Kayser, Mazas, Kreutzer, Rode, Dont, etc.
We prepare our students for exams, both ABRSM and Trinity Guildhall, understanding these as a little part of the whole learning process. Our aim is to maintain a pressure free atmosphere where goals are achieved in a non-stressful environment.
Musicians should always be in continuous development so we keep training ourselves attending regularly to master classes and being trained as teachers at The DaCapo Music Foundation.
Term dates – Autumn 2017
- Week 1 11 January
- Week 2 18 January
- Week 3 25 January
- Week 4 1 February
- Week 5 8 February
- Half Term
- Week 6 22 February
- Week 7 1 March
- Week 8 8 March
- Week 9 15 March
- Week 10 22 March
- Week 11 29 March – End of Term Concert
Halloween Special 2016:
End of Term Concert – Summer 2016. Pictures by Kayte Brimacombe