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Every pupil at Berkhampstead is involved in music from the very youngest age. With an amazing choice of instruments and a great team of specialist music teachers, taking up an individual instrument is deeply embedded in our culture.
Outstanding - I challenge anyone to find a similar sized prep school that performs better musically.— Richard Cross, Headmaster
All have the chance to enjoy performing; we also nurture especially talented musicians with chamber groups for both instrumentalists and singers. Our choir was thrilled to be invited to perform for HRH Prince Charles.
Playing together and performing is a large part of what we do and children seize the opportunities to play in recitals and assemblies, festivals and concerts.
Informal recitals take place each term and children of all abilities perform. Our annual Spring Concert is held in the spectacular venue of the Pittville Pump Room. Always a superb occasion, every child from Year 2 to Year 6 is involved and the quality of the performances is extraordinary.
By the time they reach Year 4, over 92% have started to learn an instrument and are able to join our many thriving groups and ensembles.
The older children join our choirs and ensembles and have regular opportunities to perform. Current instrument choices range from the double bass to the bassoon, the trombone to the flute.
All from age 3 enjoy music with subject specialists whose passion for music making inspires. Pre-Prep groups include Crash, Bang, Wallop for percussion and Strum It for ukulele. Berky Bears music group gets toddlers (and carers) having fun with music in our Friday fun sessions.
All of our children are taught music by music specialists. This ensures that they all develop key music skills by the time they leave us. It gives them a great opportunity to explore their natural skills and to continue their desire for music beyond their years here.
Truly remarkable standards are reached by a large percentage of the children - their love of music is quite clear. Berkhampstead is a wonderfully musical school.— Current Parent
Our bank of iPads allows our budding composers to use apps such as GarageBand to stretch their musical imaginations and create.
‘Tom and Jerry and the Temple of Cheese’ was the inspiration for composing sound effects and a background score. What fun! Using keyboards, a drum machine and a range of percussion instruments, the creativity flowed.
The story of The Frog Prince formed the basis for a comedy ‘rap’ where children produced sound effects and a dance routine using hip hop movements!
Our children are prepared for Associated Board and music scholarship exams to independent senior schools - they have great success.
Some of our children reach Grade 5 and above by age 11; a number each year are successful in auditions for the National Children’s Orchestra and Choir and the National Youth Choir as well as many local music groups.
Whatever a child’s level of ability when they join Berkhampstead School, there is something special for everyone to try. All have the chance to sing, develop skills and take pleasure in music.
Is your child considering an instrument? It’s a big commitment but perseverance brings huge rewards. Look at the smiles!