A Level Music

Music A level enables students to develop their musical skills in the three key areas of performance, listening and appraising, and composition.

The A Level aims to provide students with a good understanding of theoretical and historical aspects of music, as well as the opportunity to apply this through developing a live performance repertoire and compositions. The examination will involve aural testing, applying musical knowledge and essay writing. In both Years 12 and 13 students will explore music from a wide range of genres and from different eras through listening and score analysis.

Musical performances give students the opportunity to demonstrate the ability to play pieces from a range of styles with accuracy and expression. Performance can be solo and/or ensemble. Composition will apply knowledge gained from all areas of the course to create interesting and stimulating music in a recognised style.


Music will help students to develop a critical ear though listening as well as performance and creative skills. This will lead to the ability to analyse, deconstruct and construct music of any genre. Performance opportunities allow for collaboration between musicians and the opportunity to develop working relationships with others while regular private practice will help develop a strong sense of independence.

The knowledge and skills students gain will be particularly useful for careers in live performance, songwriting and teaching, both classroom and peripatetic.

Complementary Courses

Music A level complements studies in Music Technology.



40% Written Examination
30% Performance
30% Composition

Entry Requirements

Minimum B grade in GCSE Music.

ABRSM (or similar) Grade 5 practical on an instrument or voice.

5 A*-C grades at GCSE (including English and Mathematics at grades 9-5)

Students are expected to be open to a wide range of musical styles and genres from across a range of historical periods.


AQA A Level Music