Musicianship Levels 2020

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Level One

This is aimed at those with no or very little previous solfège experience. All participants will learn to read melodies from hand signs, stick notation and the stave in both do and la pentatonic. You will gain an understanding the structure of, and intervals within, the pentatonic scale as well as understanding and using rhythm names.

Level Two

After brief revision and consolidation of pentatonic work, the class will gradually move into the major and minor scales (natural, harmonic and melodic forms). Participants will sing in unison and parts from hand signs and notation.  There will be use of extracts from wider vocal, choral and instrumental repertoire.

Level Three

This class will work with the diatonic scale in canons, two-part sing and play/sing and sign, rhythmic work with different ostinati patterns and coordination exercises. You will gain an understanding of major and minor primary triads, two-part harmonic work (melody and bass line) and a brief introduction to modes.

Level Four

This is aimed at those who have covered the concepts in Level three and want to move on. Working further with diatonic and modal melodies, you will gain an understanding of the concept of moveable do and modulation within melodies. The class includes harmonic work, coordination exercises and ensemble work.

Level Five

This class will focus on:

  • further consolidation of diatonic music;
  • chromatic melodic materials;
  • diatonic harmony including chord progressions with both root position and inversions;
  • intensive practice of all pentatonic scales and intervals — exercises, reading and writing, dictation and memorisation;
  • modal musical materials;

Level Six

This musicianship class offers the opportunity for the development of participants’ musical hearing with the help of the relative solfa system at a more advanced level. Material includes a selection of Kodály’s pedagogical compositions: (1) pentatonic material with metric and melodic challenges (changing metre, compound metre, asymmetric compound metre, wide range melodic lines, different pentatonic modes), (2) examples of two-part imitative counterpoint (canon, free imitation, real, tonal and modal answers, motet-like structures, fugue). Special emphasis is placed on the development of stylistic awareness through the study of harmony and form of selected works from the art music repertory from the Renaissance period to modern and contemporary music.