Music instruction begins in Junior Kindergarten and continues throughout the 12th grade. The Lower School music program operates on the premise that all children are born with musical potential. Instruction provides many opportunities to develop each student’s innate musicality. In the higher grades, music electives are offered for students who wish to deepen their musical study.
Along with small class instruction and group and solo performances, sight-reading and sight-singing skills are emphasized. Reading and notating music begins as early as Junior Kindergarten. Exposure to a wide variety of music and musical styles is achieved in Lower School through listening, movement, and performance repertoire. With the use of recorded or live music, students use their bodies to demonstrate understanding of pitch, rhythm, tempo, dynamics, texture, form and style.
The string orchestra program serves students grades four through twelve and offers a sequential progression of skills. Classes are taught in large and small heterogeneous ensembles. The literature and repertoire these ensembles learn covers four centuries of classical music and string orchestra traditions from a variety of countries and cultures.
In addition to general music and strings offered at the elementary level, students in grades six through 12 have the opportunity to partake in the Jazz Band and the Chorus programs. There are three jazz bands in the middle school and two jazz ensembles in the upper school, progressing sequentially from the Beginning Jazz Band (6th grade), Intermediate Jazz Band (7th grade), Advanced Jazz Band (8th grade), Jazz Ensemble (US) and Jazz Combo (US). In Upper School, Music Theory and AP Music Theory are also offered.