Music theory: score reading taster

Course Dates: 15/04/21
Time: 19:40 - 21:10
Location: Online
Learn to navigate a music score and analyse basic structures in Western staff notation for students of grade 5+ ABRSM exams.
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Book your place
In stock
Full fee £10.00 Senior fee £10.00 Concession £10.00

Course Code: MG446E

Thu, eve, 15 Apr - 15 Apr '21

Duration: 1 session

Or call to enrol:020 7831 7831

Any questions?
or call 020 7492 2630

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

Learn the key features of a classical violin sonata and develop confidence in differentiating between key features in the notation (which forms an important strand of the Grade 6+ theory exams).

For this taster course we will study a short violin sonata by Francesca Lebrun (1756 –1791).

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

- Rhythmic and melodic characteristics of the score
- Understanding musical textures
- Understanding tonality and its context within different style periods: especially in terms of structure (eg. Sonata form)
- other elements of music, e.g. dynamics, expression, printed notation vs handwriting.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- follow a sample score with confidence
- identify the key of the piece and it’s cadence points
- identify which instruments it is written for and their specific musical symbols (e.g. violin bowing marks)
- identify the form of a piece (e.g. how many subsections: binary or ternary form…).

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

Suitable only for those with knowledge of music theory at Grade 5 standard or higher. You will need to be able to read music fluently (treble and bass clef) and have some confidence with the structure of major and minor scales and chords (e.g. do you know what is meant by chord I and chord V in G major?).

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

This is an online course:
Sessions will be held via video-conference (zoom) and comprise combinations of lecture, discussion, quizzes, guided listening, video and score study. Course materials (handouts, scores, links to online videos) will be shared via google classroom.
You must download the course materials in advance of the session.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

The score will be sourced from and links will be posted on google classroom. You will need to be confident in how to download and read a pdf file.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

We recommend MG446C Music theory: score reading starting on April 22nd, 2021

This course is an excellent introduction to score reading for anyone studying music theory at higher levels (Grade 5 and above. You may wish to progress to higher-level Music Theory classes, Studies in counterpoint, Composition Techniques etc. You may also be interested in City Lit's Music history courses, or one of our wide variety of practical courses in singing or playing an instrument.

For more details about musicianship and music theory please visit our blog: Musicianship and music theory at City lit which lists our full sequence of musicianship and music theory classes.

Edmund Taylor

Edmund is a violinist/director and music theory tutor specialising in Historical Performance. With a tremendous passion for the study of pedagogy, Edmund has taught both strings and music theory in London for over a decade. After training at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance with Walter Reiter (The English Concert), Edmund founded the period instrument group Bellot Ensemble in 2014, performing across the UK and Europe, with many exciting concerts such as the modern premier of a reconstructed Telemann Cantata. Edmund performs regularly across the UK and Europe as a violinist and leader for other historical instrument ensembles such as Armonico Consort, The Handel Orchestra and Ensemble OrQuesta, with a particular passion for operatic works from the Baroque period! Edmund is also the founder of the charitable organisation "healing notes," an organisation set up to provide virtual concerts for the hard working NHS staff during these difficult times.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.