Music – GCSE

Making music is at the heart of GCSE Music. The course is based on a strong theoretical foundation whilst allowing plenty of creativity through composing and performing.

All styles of music are welcome. This qualification supports students in forming personal and meaningful relationships with music through the development of musical knowledge, understanding and skills including performing, composing and appraising. The qualification encourages students to engage critically and creatively with a wide range of music and musical contexts, develop an understanding of the place of music in different cultures and contexts, and reflect on how music is used in the expression of personal and collective identities.


Exam Board




    • 30% – 2 performances, 1 Solo and 1 Ensemble. The performances can be any genre.
    • 30% – 2 compositions, 1 free composition and 1 to a set brief.
    • 40 % – A 1 hour 45 minute appraising exam based on all the areas of study.


Unit Content

During the course pupils will study 4 areas of study, Instrumental Music 1700 – 1820, Vocal Music, Music for Stage and Screen and Fusions. Each area of study has 2 pieces that range from Beethoven’s Piano Sonata Pathetique, Queen’s ‘Killer Queen’, Esperanza Spaldings ‘Samba em preludio’ and John Williams ‘ Star Wars’. Alongside the areas of study pupils will develop their performance, theory and composition skills.


Other Information

For pupils to achieve their full potential on the course, it is beneficial if they are able to play at grade 4 standard, as well as engage with music theory. They need to be willing to perform in class as well as demonstrate their ideas and skills with others.


Extra Curricular Opportunities

Instrumental tuition is available through the music department, with lessons taking place during and after school. There are also opportunities for pupils to perform via extra curricular groups that rehearse after school, as well as having access to practice rooms during lunch and after school.





Music Contact

Jen Berg
Head of Performing Arts
Stephanie Jones
Course Leader
Claire Mason
Music Admin Assistant