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Music Courses

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Music Theory
(Half Course)
Classes I, II & III
Starting with the fundamentals of music, this course explores a wide variety of music theory topics and theoretical problems. Music is examined through harmonic and melodic analysis. Besides the written analysis, music is examined from an aural standpoint through ear training and sight-singing. No past musical experience is necessary, although it is helpful.

Chamber Singers
(Half Course)
Classes I, II & III
This is a performing organization that emphasizes tone and detail of phrasing. Students study and perform great choral literature from every period, especially literature that is written for smaller choral groups. Individuals improve their sight-reading skills, their vocal technique and their knowledge of musical styles. Membership in Glee Club and an audition are required.

Orchestra
(Half Course)
Classes I, II & III
The orchestra is open to any woodwind, brass, string or percussion player. Besides standard, full orchestral literature, students will experience music of other ensemble types (e.g., wind band, string orchestra).

Chamber Orchestra
(Half Course)
Classes I, II & III
The orchestra is open to woodwind, brass, string or percussion players. Besides standard, full orchestral literature, students will experience music of other ensemble types (e.g., wind band, string orchestra). Chamber Orchestra is open by audition only. Chamber Orchestra students rehearse one additional period per week.

Music Package
Satisfies Arts Program Requirement
Classes I, II & III
In place of a single Arts Program course, students with special interest in music may satisfy the arts requirement through a combination of musical activities. The Music Package, designed by and for each student, includes one of the half courses offered by the department, comprising performance experience through choral singing, chamber music, or orchestral playing. Students are required to participate in a course-based performing ensemble each year they are at Milton. Additionally, students must complete a class in music theory or music history, either at Milton or by a faculty-approved equivalent course outside of school. Music lessons may be part of the package but, by themselves, do not fulfill the performance component. In lieu of music history or theory, students can propose an independent project, using their musical abilities to create social and civic impact in their community. A written application for the Music Package should specify the components of the package and requires the approval of both the music department chair and the academic dean. Applications must be completed by March of the Class II year.

Jazz Improvisation
Satisfies Arts Program Requirement
Classes I, II & III
This course gives students experience in ensemble playing and improvisation in the jazz and jazz/rock idioms. Students learn and play tunes in a group and explore the tunes for structure and harmony. This course emphasizes listening to recordings integral to the course work. Elementary knowledge of scales is required. The focus is on the development of improvisational and ensemble skills through playing. (Permission of the department chair is required.)

Advanced Jazz Improvisation
Classes I, II & III
In this continuation of the introductory course, greater emphasis is placed on performing, and the music is more challenging. Students explore complex chord scales, rhythms and structures. The course usually focuses on one artist or one style of jazz music per semester. Additional years in this course allow the advanced jazz student to continue studying and performing under the guidance of our jazz faculty. (Prerequisite: Permission of the department chair.)

Advanced Jazz Improvisation
(Half Course)
Classes I & II
In this continuation of the introductory course, greater emphasis is placed on performing, and the music is more challenging. Students explore complex chord scales, rhythms and structures. Additional years in this course allow the advanced jazz student to continue studying and performing under the guidance of our jazz faculty. (Prerequisite: Permission of the department chair.)

Private Instrumental and Vocal Lessons
(non-credit)
Milton Academy facilitates private music instruction on campus (in the Kellner Performing Arts Center) to provide individualized instruction for voice, winds, brass and string instruments. Private music teachers hail from a variety of backgrounds, including classical, jazz, and pop style performance. The music department will assist with finding teachers for students wishing to have instruction in instruments not listed.

Session I Music lessons begin in October and end in January. Session II begins in February, and continue through the end of the school year. There are twelve 45-minute lessons in each session. Lessons are generally scheduled after school but may also be scheduled during the school day depending on a student’s schedule. As such, lessons are arranged individually by the teachers and students based on mutual availability. Financial aid for private music lessons is available to Upper School students who receive financial aid for tuition.

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