Music is central to the development of the boys of Monmouth School. Around half of pupils take lessons on a musical instrument in School (around 320 individual lessons are taught in each week) and a significant number take lessons out of school. Many boys study to an advanced level – each year a number of boys achieve grade eight by the time they are 14 years of age.
The music department is housed in the Glover Music School which is generously resourced, and includes an auditorium, ICT suite and numerous class and teaching rooms. There are four full time and twenty-three part time staff members. Instrumental lessons are taught by a team of nationally renowned players and are timetabled on a rota basis, although many boys at the top of the school make arrangements for a fixed lesson.
Instrumental and Choral concerts are presented each year, with smaller scale recitals and workshops happening throughout the year. International artists often give workshops and masterclasses in the school (Band of the Welsh Guards 2009, Harpham Quartet 2011, Boomtown Rat Garry Roberts in 2012). School groups have been finalists in the National Association of Youth Brass Bands Competition, National Concert Band Festival and National Chamber Music Competition in recent years.
The School maintains a strong choral tradition, both in and out of the Chapel. The choral society presents a major choral work every year (Stravinsky’s Symphony of Psalms, Rutter’s Gloria, Vaughan Williams’ Five Mystical Songs, Orff’s Carmina Burana, Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms). The Chapel Choir makes regular visits and concerts out of school and has sung at St. Paul’s Cathedral, St. George’s Windsor, Lichfield Cathedral and Westminster Cathedral in the last five years.
Tours occur on a regular basis (Barcelona in 2008, Paris in 2009, Prague and Bohemia in 2011, Italy in 2012, Spain and Morocco in 2013, South of France in 2015). Pupils regularly go on to study music in Higher Education, frequently winning choral and organ awards and scholarships (King’s College, Gonville and Caius College and Jesus Colleges at Cambridge, Merton College, Oxford and The Royal Academy of Music recently).
The Grange (Monmouth Preparatory School)
- Wind Band
- String Orchestra
- Class String Orchestras
- Grange Choir
- Rock Band
- Junior Wind Band
- Bach Orchestra (junior string orchestra)
- Senior Strings (joint with HMSG)
- Symphonic Winds (joint with HMSG)
- Monmouth School Jazz Orchestra
- Chapel Choir
- Choral Society
- Junior String Quartet
- Ten Piece Brass Ensemble
- Senior String Quartet
- Wind Chamber Music Groups
Music Scholarships and minor Exhibitions are made at 11+, 13+ and 16. An Organ Scholarship is available at 13+ and 16+. Holders of Music Awards are expected to set a strong example of commitment and organisation to their peers throughout their time in the school. They would be expected to play in an appropriate instrumental ensemble, sing in a choir and take part in chamber music, as well as studying Music at GCSE level when the time comes. Many award holders do much more than this.
The Director of Music and Organist, David Lawson, is happy to speak with parents at any time. Appointments to meet prospective pupils and scholars can be made through the Admissions Office on 01600 710433.
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