Music plays a central role to life at Bedford School. All boys have the opportunity to explore and perform, with a wide range of musical instruments and groups to choose from. There are ensembles to cater for all ages and standards, from beginner to professional.
We see music education as an academically demanding discipline that is an incredibly important element of all boys’ experience here at Bedford School. Engaging with and understanding music is part of the richness of being human. Music involves a synthesis of the practical, rational and emotional and has been at the heart of education in the Western world for centuries.
As a department, we aim to broaden all boys’ experience and understanding of as wide a range of music as possible. At all ages, we aim to develop their performing, composing, listening and analytical skills. We aim to foster and encourage a love of music and to spark within boys an eagerness to take the initiative to find out more about the subject themselves.
There is a strong choral tradition at the school, which varies from the more specialist chapel choir to the annual house singing competition. In addition, there are a number of chamber music groups which rehearse and perform regularly.
There is a full music programme throughout each year, with at least one concert a week, including weekly lunchtime concerts, which are open to the general public. There are also the major school concerts, including our Choral Society Concert each spring term, as well as an annual rock night. We hold concerts across a range of prestigious London venues such as St James’ Piccadilly, St Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey. Our chapel choir also recently toured Paris and Rome.
The Music Department is housed in a stunning £3 million music school, designed by Eric Parry, R.A. and completed in November 2005. This state-of-the-art building includes a fine recital hall, a 100-seat auditorium with sweeping views across the school playing fields to the sports pavilion.
There are three dedicated academic teaching rooms, one of which houses a suite of Apple iMacs with Logic Pro 9 and Sibelius 7. There is a multi-track recording studio running Logic Pro 9 on an Apple Mac Pro computer with the options of recording both from a live room and the recital hall. We also have a separate radio station running an ENCO DAD broadcast system.
Instrumental teaching takes place in a suite of 15 specialist teaching rooms, including two dedicated percussion rooms. There are six additional practice rooms which are available for boys to use throughout the week.
The Great Hall is a perfect venue for our larger concerts due to its fantastic atmosphere. It houses a four manual Copeman Hart organ. Our Chapel is an iconic building, the last building of the great late Victorian architect, George Frederick Bodley, and it is within this beautifully decorated space, with its fine acoustic, that the choir performs on a regular basis. The organ in the chapel is a two manual Hill, Norman and Beard.
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|Performance Music Staff||Music Recordings|