Music theory: diploma topics 1
Time: 15:00 - 17:00
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
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Course Code: MG430A
Duration: 10 sessions (over 11 weeks)
What is the course about?
The course follows the first part of the Trinity Associate (AMusTCL) syllabus, which forms part of a Level 4 diploma in music theory through study of Western classical music genres. In this particular module we will cover “ Musical skills” which focuses on topics including harmony, counterpoint, orchestration and melodic composition.
Please note that the exam is not included in this course, but can be taken as an optional extra.
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.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
- Baroque: Lutheran chorale
- Classical: orchestration
- Early Romantic: pianoforte music, completing a texture
- C20th: Popular song, completing a piano accompaniment
- C20th: Melodic composition without using the major/minor key system.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Feel confident answering two questions from section A of the AMusTCL syllabus
- Appreciate the challenges of orchestration in a variety of styles
- Understand and recognise different types of texture and its structural functions
- Listen to music actively and analytically
- Have greater fluency in score-reading in different styles
- Have a greater understanding of the art of arranging and orchestration.
- Be able to complete harmonic textures in a variety of styles.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This course is the first part of a sequence:
- September: diploma topics 1 - techniques
- January: diploma topics 2 – set works
- April: diploma topics 3 – exam questions
This course assumes a firm knowledge of music theory to at least Grade 7 standard, You should also be a confident performer on an instrument to at least Grade 6 standard. If in doubt please contact the music office
You will need to follow written and verbal instructions in English, engage in class discussions and take notes in English.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
This is an online course you will need your own copy of the course text-book (see below) and a computer or tablet with a webcam, microphone and reliable internet connection to take this class. We use Google Classroom to share messages, documents, audio and video files and for you to submit any homework tasks. We use Zoom for live classes via webcam.
Your tutor will use a variety of techniques:
- tutor explanation and demonstration via webcam / shared screen
- short revision videos and/or audio files (posted in Google Classroom)
- worksheets (posted in Google Classroom)
- group performing and individual demonstration tasks (e.g. clapping rhythms or uploading your homework as pdf/photo).
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Please bring a notebook and pen and manuscript paper.
You are asked to buy and bring to each class your own copy of AMusTCL Study Guide for section A (revised 2017 edition) buy from Trinity Shop
You will also be required to buy/borrow books from the AMusTCL reading list to use during the course.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
The next module in January (MG430B) will approach the prescribed works forming the second part of the AMusTCL syllabus.
Please note, the Trinity Associate (AMusTCL) diploma is an external exam. The price of this exam is not included in your enrolment on this course. If you wish to sit the exam you will need to enrol individually via the Trinity exam website.
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.
I have spent my professional career balancing performing as a concert pianist with teaching academic music courses. I was formerly a lecturer at the Royal College of Music and Trinity Laban Conservatoire, but have found that I enjoy teaching non-professionals far more, so a great deal of my work over the last three years has been with adult amateurs and the general public. Born to Indian parents (the name is a long story, but I and my forbears are Indian as far as records go back!), I now also spend a few months each year in India working with teachers and advanced students with the aim, ultimately, of opening India's first conservatoire. My research work has largely been in the area of 19th and 20th century performing practice, although for the last three years I have been investigating approaches to performance creativity, first at New College, Oxford, and now at Hughes Hall, Cambridge. In my spare time you may occasionally me performing as a founder member of the prog rock band, The Connoisseur.
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.