The Stoneleigh-Burnham instrumental and vocal music program welcomes each student at her level and helps her continue to grow as a musician. From beginner through advanced, through a wide variety of musical styles, students are encouraged to explore and develop their love of music. SBS has been recognized as a pioneer in girls’ music education for its award-winning vocal, jazz and classical groups and for instituting a course in rock band. Whether you want to begin an instrument or continue a passion, the Stoneleigh-Burnham music program has a rich variety of offerings to meet individual needs.
This course will cover the fundamentals of music and listening through a survey of traditional music from around the world. Among those cultures covered will be those of Africa, the Middle East, Asia (Korea, Japan, China), America and Latin America.
World music covers the fundamentals of ethnomusicology. Students learn how to study the music of different cultures in respect to their instruments, culture, religion, environment, and economies. Students are required to do a research paper studying the music of one of the areas of the world (North America, Latin America, Africa, Middle East, Far East).
This is a one-trimester, graded course and is required of all ninth-graders. Other students may take the course on an elective basis.
This course is designed to deepen students’ appreciation of vocal music, to develop a sense of discipline and responsibility through participation, and to enhance their appreciation of a wide variety of vocal masterworks. Students sing choral literature of various genres including American spirituals, jazz, pop, and gospel, classical European choral literature, and traditional, folk, and popular music from around the world. This is a full-year, pass/fail performance group that fulfills 1 arts requirement.
In this course students learn correct vocal, sight singing, and performance techniques as they work with all types and styles of choral literature. The literature may include: choral masterpieces by composers of the Renaissance, Baroque, classical, romantic and twentieth-century style periods of both sacred and secular type, folk songs, chorales and spiritual arrangements, madrigal music and chamber choir, Broadway musical tunes and medleys, lighter pop arrangements suitable for large ensembles and jazz/show choir. Students should have some background in singing, either formal or informal. This is a full year, pass/fail performance ensemble that fulfills 3 arts requirements. An audition is required.
This course is open to players of all instruments and abilities. Students develop individual and ensemble instrumental techniques through the study and performance of a variety of music from standard jazz and big band literature. Students perform at concerts and jazz festivals. This is a full year, pass/fail performance ensemble that fulfills one arts requirement.
Throughout the year students will cover big band repertoire that spans stylistically from jazz standards to latin and popular and work on things like winter holiday medleys and medium funk arrangements such as “Glazed Over.”
Chamber Music Ensemble
This course is designed for students who have some instrumental experience and are interested in studying and performing chamber music. A variety of ensembles may be formed according to instrumentation and ability. Students will develop individual and ensemble instrumental technique and perform at concerts and festivals. This is a full year, pass/fail performance ensemble that fulfills one arts credit.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.
This course is designed for students who have some instrumental experience and are interested in studying and performing standard jazz combo literature. In addition to developing instrumental technique, students will study the art of jazz improvisation. Jazz music theory and forms will be discussed. Students perform at concerts and jazz festivals. This is a full year, pass/fail performance ensemble that fulfills one arts requirement.
The course primarily covers jazz standards and the art of improvisation. Classes are dedicated to creating a cohesive rhythm section with plenty of room for soloists to improvise.
Prerequisite: Permission of instructor.
International Baccalaureate Music
IB Music will immerse students in the in-depth study of the musical links between cultures to train students to think about music within a global context. The curriculum will cover topics in Western and non-Western music such as theory, aural skills, performance, composition and music technology. Students will benefit from various approaches to instruction including, but not limited to, listening, reading, harmonic analysis, composition and performance projects. Students will choose to focus on one of these study areas: music creation, solo performance, or group performance.
Offered in HL (Higher Level) and SL (Standard Level). International Baccalaureate courses are two years in length, take during a student’s 11th and 12th grade years.
Middle School Rock Band
This course is open to anyone interested in making great rock music together. Students may sing or play instruments, and beginning instrumentalists are welcome. Students work together to choose what music they want to perform, rehearse those pieces, and prepare for performances. This group may perform in major concerts such as Fall and Spring Family Weekend and the Winter Solstice Concert, in informal concerts at the end of each term, and in the Middle School Performance in late May. Through the year, students develop practice skills, rehearsal skills (including collaboration), and performance skills. Students who take this course are exempted from Music 7 (as 7th graders) or Music 8 (as 8th graders), though many students choose to take those courses anyway.
Upper School Rock Band
This course is open both to experienced and beginning musicians, singers and instrumentalists alike. Students work together to choose what music they want to perform, rehearse those pieces, and prepare for performances.This group typically performs in major concerts such as Fall and Spring Family Weekend and the Winter Solstice Concert, in informal concerts at the end of each term, and in the special Senior Performance the day before graduation. Through the year, students develop practice skills, rehearsal skills (including collaboration), and performance skills. Individual students work with the teacher to take on new technical challenges as they become ready. This course is pass/fail and fulfills one art requirement.