Dedication and self-motivation – students will spend a lot of their own time in the recording studio.
Sixth Form Music Technologists divide their time between making pop or classical recordings in the studio, making arrangements with computer sequencing programs and studying commercial music of the 20th and 21st centuries. Recordings use ambient and multi-track techniques, with the students learning digital post-production techniques, location recording and how to arrange music using programs such as Logic, Reason, and Sibelius.
The Music School is equipped with a 24-track digital recording studio, a technology room, custom-made recording spaces and live rooms. The technology room has fifteen hi-spec iMacs running Logic, Reason and Sibelius software, all of which are essential parts of the Music Technology course. The studio contains an Apple G5 computer running Logic and Reason sequencing software and is also fully equipped to handle analogue recording techniques. Sixth Form Technologists have full access to these facilities and are expected to use them fully both in and out of lesson time.
The course is set out as follows:
- Unit 1: Portfolio 1 (coursework). Three tasks, completed during the course, including making a sequenced realisation from a score, making a mulit-track recording, and creatign a sequenced arrangement. A logbook also has to be completed.
- Unit 2: Listening and Analysing. A listening examingation on all aspects of Popular Music (from 1910 to the present) and Music Technology.
- Unit 3: Portfolio 2 (coursework). Three tasks, completed during the course, including makeing a sequence with audio vocal (and other, if necessary) tracks, amking a multi-track reording and writing a composition.
- Unit 4: Analysing and Producing. An examination including listening/analysis questions about recorded music, and a practical test involving the production of a stereo mix.
Music Technology A level opens up a number of avenues for degree courses and subsequent careers in arts or technology-related areas. Many universities now offer Music Technology degrees, and the subject is viewed by many as an interesting combination of arts and technology.
This course is suitable for all students who have a specific interest in both music and production/recording. It is important to be proficient in an instrument and to be comfortable with traditional musical notation; it is also important to be experienced in working with computers and, ideally, to have had experience with music applications. It is highly preferable that students have taken GCSE music.
Above all, Music Technologists have to be extremely dedicated and self-motivated students, willing to spend a lot of their own time in the recording studio. Those who do, find the course extremely fulfilling, valuable and interesting. You should see Mr Rushby if you are unsure whether this course would be suitable for you or not.
Mr S J Rushby
Director of Music