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Saint Gabriel’s College

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Instrumental Programme

At Saint Gabriel’s College we believe that every student should be offered the opportunity to learn singing or a musical instrument.  Music helps young people express themselves, enjoy being creative and grow in confidence.  Learning to play or sing with others in an ensemble is a joyful activity, developing a sense of community through teamwork, co-operation and friendship.  Students who learn an instrument or voice in school also learn to be organised, disciplined and responsible for their practice and progress. Students who learn music tend to achieve well academically across their other subjects.

We therefore offer every student the opportunity to learn singing or a musical instrument, free of charge, when they start in Year 7.  Lessons are taught in small groups or one-to-one with a peripatetic music teacher.  Students who take peripatetic lessons are required to participate in at least one music ensemble as an extra-curricular activity.

All students learn music as a class subject in Years 7 and 8, with music as an option from Year 9 onwards.  Students who show commitment and dedication to their music may continue with peripatetic lessons for as long as they take music as an academic subject.  Students who do not choose music as an option subject may continue peripatetic lessons at the discretion of the Director of Music and the Principal. 

Instruments and Ensembles

Tuition is offered in the following departments:

Brass: trumpet, tenor horn, trombone, baritone/tuba

Wind: flute, clarinet, saxophone

Percussion: steel pan, drums

Strings: violin, cello, guitar, piano


Ensembles include: concert band, jazz band, brass band, string ensemble, guitar ensemble, lower woodwind, upper woodwind, steel pan, choir

Music Scholarships

12 school places each year are allocated to students with a high level of musical ability and who would benefit from our specialist Music Scholarship programme, including:

  • Free tuition on up to two instruments/voice, including one-to-one teaching on one instrument.
  • In addition to the class music lesson, a fortnightly music seminar taught by the Director of Music.
  • Access to professional concerts and participation in music workshops.
  • Participation in ensembles and concerts as per the regular Instrumental Programme.

Children in Year 6 can apply for a Music Scholarship as part of the Secondary School Admissions process. 

Please complete a Supplementary Information Form with details of the child’s musical instrument/voice and return to the school by October Half Term.  You must also name Saint Gabriel’s College as one of your six Secondary School choices using the online Common Application Form.

After October Half Term we will write to invite your child to attend the Music Scholarship audition.  The child should prepare a piece to sing or on the instrument(s) of their choice, and bring the music score with them. Unfortunately we are unable to provide an accompanist.  There will also be an informal interview with the Director of Music.

We will write to you after the audition process to let you know if your child has secured a scholarship place.  If your child is not successful in securing a scholarship place they will still have the opportunity to take music lessons through the normal Instrumental Programme.