Our expert instrumental teaching staff currently teach over 120 students on a wide range of instruments including voice, piano, organ guitar, drums, strings, woodwind and brass. We host the Associated Board for an exam session each term meaning that students can take their exams in familiar surroundings. Instrumental lessons can be arranged by the Director of Music.
We offer students opportunities to take part in a variety of ensembles. Singing is an area of real excellence with a well-established choral tradition. Our award-winning chamber and chapel choirs rehearse twice weekly and prepare a wide range of repertoire for chapel services, competitions and concerts. Our lower school choir rehearses weekly and performs regularly covering repertoire of all genres. This approach ensures sufficient challenge for all students and provides a thorough preparation for applying for choral scholarships at university. The musical theatre ensemble offers opportunities to combine singing, acting and dance through a session held weekly in our theatre. We also have a wide range of instrumental ensembles comprising: orchestra; lower school band; woodwind ensemble; brass ensemble; flute choir; percussion ensemble; string ensemble and jazz band.
We offer GCSE Music, A-Level Music (following the Edexcel syllabus) and International Baccalaureate Music as options for students in senior years. These courses seek to develop students as confident performers and composers who possess excellent listening skills. All three skills are intertwined and are afforded equal importance. Furthermore, students study music theory and notation throughout their time at the college in order to have a solid base from which to build on their skills. We believe that creativity is integral to every aspect of a musician's development. Students explore their musical ideas in different ways using the latest notation and sequencing software as well as through improvisation which aids the development of performance skills.
Students have the opportunity to perform regularly in concerts, musical productions, chapel services, assemblies, open days and visits out of college in the community. We encourage students to take part in music festivals such as the annual Oswestry Youth Music Festival. Students also have the opportunity to go on music tours abroad every other year, these have included Paris and Rome, where we gave concerts at Notre Dame, St. Peter's Basilica and the Pantheon. The choirs also perform UK tours on the alternate years which have included performances at; St. George's Chapel, Windsor; Queens' College, Oxford and the V & A Museum, London.
The music department is committed to working in the community and as such we have a long-established choral society open to all, conducted by the Director of Music. We have a community orchestra - Ellesmere Sinfonia - which is open to players of grade 5 standard and above. Both groups perform a variety of concerts each year, many raising money for charities such as Age UK, Hope House and Severn Hospice. We host a recital series each year that showcases the wonderful sounds of the Chapel Organ and the rare Schulze Organ in Big School.
Music is an integral part of life at Ellesmere College and we value the talent, enthusiasm and dedication displayed by all our students and supported generously by the wider community.