The Summerhill music department is the largest department in the school! Lessons are offered in guitar, bass, drums, piano, keyboard, singing, ukulele, cello and double bass. In recent history teachers have been brought in for saxophone, trumpet and violin too, and we try our best to support any desire to explore any other instrument no matter how exotic!
Aside from instrumental studies we also offer lessons in music technology, recording, traditional theory, modern theory, improvisation, jamming, composition and a whole host individualised workshops that take place throughout the year. We also have general music lessons for all areas of the school and singing lessons for the younger areas, where familiarity with the studio and confidence is built through regularly performing in front of others.
A students development is led primarily by them, moving from general music lessons, as they get older, into specific one-to-ones on various instruments or computer music production. For the older kids we support graded qualifications and, where there is demand, either vocational qualifications or GCSE’s. Some older kids chose not to pursue qualifications but take lessons in advanced theory, counterpoint, composition or improvisation, amongst others!
Music is a key part of life at Summerhill, with almost all students engaged in it at some time. Public performances happen regularly on the school calendar and many pursue music to a higher level after Summerhill, with recent graduates performing in touring bands and working at Abbey Road studios!