The Music Department has two main aims embracing both the academic and extra-curricular aspects of Music education. We want to make music as fun, inclusive and useful for our students as possible. Academically our aim is to prepare boys for GCSE and AS/A2 level Music (CCEA) and at the same time to nurture talent that will enable boys to participate fully in the activities we offer such as choirs, orchestras, chamber ensembles, Rock groups, Pipe Band and Jazz Band.
Ever increasing opportunities to perform are provided throughout the year. The choirs have a leading role in the annual Carol service and the Remembrance service. In addition, the choirs and Senior Orchestra perform regularly at other Family services held throughout the year.
The main musical event of the year is our Spring Concert which showcases all of our ensembles across the College, as well as some soloists. Traditionally, we have alternate full scale Musicals (recent productions have included Love Changes Everything, South Pacific, Oliver and Hairspray) with Strathearn School, who we collaborate with.
In the past our most able students have also been given the opportunity to perform as soloists with the fully professional Sinfonietta Orchestra. Over the past few years this concert series has given the opportunity for over a dozen Campbell pupils to perform at the highest level in concerto movements.
An extensive Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music Examinations programme is also on offer, helping to provide a structure enabling the boys to progress in their musical studies.
The Music Department although currently situated in one of the oldest parts of the School (New House – completed in 1902) endeavours to try and keep in touch with the changing nature of music in the digital age. In addition to two Music classrooms, we have a dedicated Music Technology Suite for delivery of the Music curriculum using software such as Sibelius and Logic Pro X.
This room has at its heart a network of some 13 Apple Mac computers. This set up allows pupils to produce high quality original recordings for both exam requirements and pure recreational enjoyment. This facility is naturally very popular with the pupils from Year 8 right through to A Level!
Additionally, we currently have five practice rooms used on a daily basis by our nine visiting Music Tutors for tuition and ensemble rehearsals. They are also used as ensemble group work rooms for our newly updated KS3 curriculum.
Head of Music – Mr A Doherty BMus (Hons), PGCE
Teacher of Music – Mrs G Wilson BMus (Hons), MTD
Teacher of Music, Assistant Exams Officer – Mr M Snodden BMus (Hons), PGCE, DipLCM
Teacher of Music, Head of KS5 and Careers – Mrs S Coetzee BMus (Hons), PGCE
Visiting Music Tutors
Mrs S Adgey – Voice
Mr D Catherwood – Composer in Residence
Miss R Curlett – Lower Strings
Mrs M Fenn – Woodwind
Mr G Harris – Pipes and Drums
Mrs J Leslie – Brass and Piano (Senior School)
Mr D Lindsay – Guitar (and Rock Group)
Mrs L Lynch – Percussion
Mrs H McMordie – Piano
Mrs H Neale – Upper Strings, Piano and Theory
Mr M Wilson – Brass (Junior School)
This year saw the formation of the school’s Senior Choir – a group of 35 Tenors and Basses who rehearse each morning from 8.30am in preparation for our wide variety of performances throughout the school year.
In addition to our Family Services, Carol Service and Spring Concert, the choir also took part in an Ulster Youth Choir workshop in November, after which several boys auditioned, and were offered a place on their summer residential course, held annually at CCB.
We are very proud of the dedication of the boys involved, and are very impressed with the mature, confident sound that they are producing.
We are also looking ahead to another successful year beginning in September, and hope to involve the boys in more external performances and competitions.
The Middle School Choir welcomes boys entering year 8 to come and sing in the Choir! The Choir presently consists of 35 Trebles and Altos spanning years 8 -11. Trebles rehearse every Monday morning from 8.30 – 9.00am and Altos rehearse each Tuesday morning from 8.30 – 9.00am. An extra rehearsal of 25 minutes is held once every fortnight during part of the Tutor Period.
As well as being fun and a good way to make friends, pupils are encouraged to learn to read music and expand their vocal range during rehearsal time. The Choir take part in several musical events in the School Calendar including Family Services, the Carol Service, Daffodil Tea and the Music Society Concert. New members always welcome!
- Senior Orchestra (approx. grade 4+)
- Junior Orchestra (approx. grades 1-3)
- Chamber Ensembles
- Rock Groups
- Pipe Band
- Jazz Band
The Senior Orchestra consists of our more advanced strings, brass, woodwind and percussion players in school, regardless of age, with the minimum standard of entry at approximately Grade 4 level. These enthusiastic young musicians attend a one-hour rehearsal every Tuesday after school in preparation for Family Services and the Spring Concert.
This year, the orchestra have performed a varied repertoire, ranging from Beethoven to Adele, along with music from Back to the Future! All performances have been very well received, and the boys are to be commended for their dedication and talent!
At Campbell we firmly believe in developing our musicians from the grass roots up. This is very much a training ensemble for students who have recently started their exciting journey of learning their new instrument! As well as beginners, we encourage younger students who have already reached a solid level of ability to act as leaders in the ensemble, preparing them for the Senior Orchestra in the near future.
The Music Department are keen to continue to expand the provision for smaller ensembles throughout the College. The following groups meet regularly, working towards various performances in assemblies, concerts and external events:
For updates on when they meet to rehearse please follow us on Facebook and Twitter:
Facebook = @CCBMusicDepartment
Twitter = @CCBMusicDept
The Rock Group is open to all musicians who wish to strum, hit, sing, blow into or bow their instruments. We meet on Wednesday after school in the music department and learn complete tunes to perform at school functions such as the Easter concert and parent Open Days. These groups also feed into GCSE performances which account for 30% of the overall GCSE result for those who choose music as a pathway in year 11-12, although the group focus is as much to do with having fun and enjoying music as it is being assessed. The Rock Group is overseen by Mr David Lindsay who has 20 years of experience in teaching instrumental music and facilitating music groups.
Campbell College Pipe Band was founded in 1909 and is currently one of the oldest active pipe bands in Northern Ireland. Members are recruited from both Junior and Senior School with individual lessons for either Bagpipes or Snare Drum available from P6. In addition, an open class is available to all members once per week throughout the year (including school holidays!) for the purpose of self-improvement.
Band practices are held twice per week during term and are aimed at those students who have progressed beyond the complete beginner stage and are ready to start playing with the band. Practices focus not only on musical performance, but also other aspects of playing with a band such as: instrument maintenance, uniform maintenance, marching drill and deportment.
Band Practice: Monday & Thursday, 15.30 - 16.30
Open Class: Wednesday, 15.30 - 18.30 (Term time), 13.30 - 16.30 (Holiday Time)
Individual lessons available on request
In September 2017, we formed a Jazz Band consisting of around 15 players who enjoy performing this style of music (a personal favourite of Mr Doherty’s!)
The band rehearses on a Friday after school, and this year, we worked towards our Spring Concert in March by preparing three jazzy numbers! The band also performed in assembly, and next year, we hope to take part in the annual school’s Big Band Showcase event in Belfast, which is run by the Ulster Youth Jazz Orchestra.