Areas of Study
Students will study music from four contrasting areas of study. For 2016-18, these will be:
- Instrumental Music of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven
- Popular Song: Blues, Jazz, Swing and Big Band
- Religious Music of the Baroque Period
- Innovations in Music: 1900 to the present day
The Areas of Study encourage a musical and practical approach to learning, and promote an integration between the skills of performing, composing, and appraising (listening).
Performance (35% of total A level)
A recital lasting a minimum of ten minutes of at least three contrasting pieces. You will perform music showing technical and expressive control, and an understanding of style and context. You may choose to relate your recital to one or more of the Areas of Study to demonstrate your understanding of style and context, and to inform your performance choices.
Composition (25% of total A level)
You will complete two compositions, with a combined duration of at least four minutes. One will be in response to a brief set by OCR, and the second in response to a brief set by yourself in consultation with your teacher. You will be expected to make use of the musical elements, techniques and resources to create and develop musical ideas with technical control and expressive understanding.
Listening and appraising (40% of total A level)
Through the investigation and in-depth study of the large variety of music contained in the areas of study, you will further develop your knowledge and understanding of the musical elements, contexts and language. This will be assessed through one exam lasting two and a half hours, in which you’ll answer questions on familiar and unfamiliar pieces; some questions will be in response to listening to extracts of music, and others will require longer essay answers.
Entry Criteria: GCSE grade 6 in Music or a Level 2 Distinction in Music BTEC, or have significant musical experience that is of a similar standard. Performance skills of at least grade 5 ABRSM (or equivalent) standard are required, and receiving professional tuition on your chosen performance instrument.
Plus: GCSE grade 5 in English (Language or Literature) and GCSE grade 5 in Mathematics