The module is in two parts: Aural Skills and Keyboard Skills/Harmony and Counterpoint.
Aural Skills develops musicianship through focussed listening to music, and critical reflection on that experience. Through weekly engagement with questions of how we listen, what we listen for, and how our perception might be communicated, students will become more aware of that process, and develop their skills of perception and analysis of music, irrespective of whether a score is available or not.We will use the experience of real music as a starting point, rather than focussing on specific exercises. Through exposure to a variety of music of different periods and genres, the following issues will be investigated, amongst others: form, timbre, harmony, melody, rhythm, style, technique.
Keyboard Skills/Harmony and Counterpoint develops and extends musicianship and equips students with the necessary skills (score-reading, transposition, harmonisation, improvisation, figured bass etc.) to achieve greater flexibility in seeking career development. The ability to score-read, for example, is vital for anyone wishing to conduct; harmonisation and improvisation etc. are important elements in music therapy, and a working knowledge of figured bass playing and transposition is necessary for keyboard specialists. All these skills should form an essential part of the technical equipment of any musician. Work in Keyboard Skills will take the form of an introduction to the various elements involved. Work in Harmony and Counterpoint will consist of considering and working exercises in various musical styles. Classes will also analyse chord progressions and work at harmonising at the keyboard.
For Aural Skills (50% of the marks) assessment is through a take-away paper given towards the end of the Spring Term, which offers a choice of assessment task applied to a variety of styles of music (due Monday Week 5, Summer Term, 4pm). For Harmony and Counterpoint (50%) assessment is through four take-away assignments throughout the year; two will be assessed formatively; the two summative assignments are equally weighted.
Harmony and Counterpoint
By the end of the Aural Skills part of the module, students should:
By the end of the Keyboard Skills/Harmony and Counterpoint part of the module, students should: