Musicianship Program

The study of music theory and development of ear training is a core component of instrument and voice study across all levels of study. As students progress through the School’s sequential and leveled curriculum, they develop music literacy and an understanding of the elements and structure of music. Multiple class formats include experiences in listening, singing, movement, conducting, playing, reading, and notating music, which lead to analyses of repertoire masterpieces, as well as work in improvisation and composition.


Chorus

Diller-Quaile’s choruses provide sequential study of choral literature for young voices and the fundamentals of vocal technique. Through the study of choral repertoire spanning various periods and styles, students develop ensemble skills, sight-singing skills, comfort with score reading, and music literacy. Diller-Quaile choruses for grade one and older perform in the School’s large ensemble concerts each semester.

Young Children’s Chorus Grades 1&2 (#130) Wednesday 3:45-4:30 p.m.
Chorus Grades 3-7 (#131) Wednesday 4:35-5:25 p.m.
The Diller-Quaile Chorus Grades 5-8 (#113) Monday 4:40-5:40 p.m.

Dalcroze Eurhythmics

The Dalcroze approach integrates the ear, mind, and body through natural movement, singing, and improvisation. Through kinesthetic experiences students show what they hear in music. As students walk, run, and gallop, elements of music are identified, such as a regular beat, rhythm patterns, articulation, and nuances. When singing, students use their hands and arms to show the shape of a melody or a phrase. These movements help students feel and internalize the relationship of pitches while tuning the voice and ear to each other. These experiences lead naturally into music notation. More experienced students are further challenged with exercises in form, meter, and polyrhythms. Students move through an experiential mode to a symbolic mode of understanding music concepts.

Dalcroze Eurhythmics Ages 5&6 (#110) Monday 3:45-4:30 p.m.
Dalcroze Eurhythmics Grades 1&2 (#120) Tuesday 4:30-5:15 p.m.
Dalcroze Eurhythmics Grades 1&2 (#141) Thursday 4:00-4:45 p.m.
Dalcroze Eurhythmics Grades 3-5 (#121) Tuesday 5:15-6:00 p.m.
Dalcroze Eurhythmics Grades 3-5 (#143) Thursday 5:00-5:45 p.m.

 Great Composers

Students encounter the great works of musical canon, not only for their intrinsic artistic value, but also as textbooks. Students work music concepts and ideas through direct contact with and application to the masterworks of the repertoire. Active listening, score reading, group singing, playing, and conducting are among the experiences that guide students through the material, as they come to place composers, their works, and the musical styles they represent in an historical context. Classes study music of the Renaissance through the Modern Era.

Great Composers Ages 5&6 (#140) Thursday 3:45-4:30 p.m.
Great Composers Ages 5&6 (#150) Friday 3:45-4:30 p.m.
Great Composers Grades 1&2 (#151) Friday 4:30-5:15 p.m.
Great Composers Grades 6-8 (#163) Saturday 10:00-10:45 a.m.

 Orff Ensemble

Through speech, group singing, movement, and instrument playing, students explore music concepts, build music literacy, and come to understand the elements and structure of music. The Orff Ensemble plays recorders and non-pitched and pitched percussion instruments, such as drums, wood xylophones and metal glockenspiels. Students read, improvise, and compose ostinati and varied accompaniments to music from diverse cultures in a creative classroom setting.

Orff Ensemble Ages 5&6 (#160) Saturday 9:00-9:45 a.m.
Orff Ensemble Grades 1&2 (#111) Monday 3:45-4:30 p.m.
Orff Ensemble Grades 1&2 (#161) Saturday 10:00-10:45 a.m.
Orff Ensemble Grades 3&4 (#112) Monday 4:30-5:15 p.m.
Orff Ensemble Grades 3&4 (#142) Thursday 4:30-5:15 p.m.

Music Theory and Ear Training

These Kodály based classes develop the complete musician in each student through active listening, group singing, movement, conducting, dictation, sight-singing with solfège, and score analysis. Through the study of folk and composed music appropriate to their level of experience, students build music literacy and an understanding of the elements and structure of music. Individual, partnered, and group improvisations support and deepen their musical understanding. These experiences with improvisation lead naturally to individual and group compositions.

Theory & Ear Training Grades 3-5 (#162) Saturday 11:00-11:45 a.m.
Theory & Ear Training Grades 6-8(#132) Wednesday 5:30-6:15 p.m.
Theory & Ear Training Grades 6-8 (#144) Thursday 5:15-6:00 p.m.
Theory & Ear Training Grades 6-8 (#153) Friday 4:30-5:15 p.m.

Musicianship with Computers

This class is designed for students to support and expand their knowledge if music theory with computers. The software used incorporates several levels of material that can be shaped to the student’s needs. Class experiences include opportunities to sing, play rhythm instruments, read, and conduct, while computer work reinforces musical concepts and notation skills.

Musicianship with Computers Grades 3-5 (#152) Friday 3:45-4:30 p.m.
Musicianship with Computers Grades 6-8 (#122) Tuesday 5:15-6:00 p.m.

Composition

Through experience with the fundamentals of creative improvisation and composition, students deepen their understanding of music structure and notation. Class members study scores through singing, playing, and conducting, and regularly play and discuss each other’s works.

Composition Grades 6-8 (#165) Saturday 12:15-1:00 p.m.
Composition Grades 9-12 (#166) Saturday 1:00-1:45 p.m.

High School Comprehensive

The High School Comprehensive curriculum is a robust course of musicianship study that provides the advancing high school student with sophisticated musical understanding. Through experiences including sight-singing, ear training, dictation, and keyboard harmony, students analyze the rhythm, melody, harmony, phrasing, and form of selected works. Students’ repertoire serves as a springboard for group discussion and analysis, as well as for examples of critical concepts.

High School Comprehensive Grades 9-12 (#145) Thursday 6:00-6:45 p.m.
High School Comprehensive Grades 9-12 (#154) Friday 5:15-6:00 p.m.
High School Comprehensive Grades 9-12 (#164) Saturday 10:00-10:45 a.m.

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