To nurture young musical talent by offering exceptional opportunities in all aspects of musical studies.
Four full-time staff : Greta Graham (Head of Music), Babalwa Mpulu, Warren Patientia, Levi Alexander
Thirteen part-time staff: Peter Amon, Lezanne Augustin, Mark Augustin, Mike Blake, Keketso Bolofo, Murray Buitendag, Robert Jeffery , Joseph MacMillan, Mike Nixon, Luke Otto, Gabriele von Durckheim, Jonathan Walters, Buddy Wells.
Instruments offered at SACS
- French Horn
- Big Band (Senior Jazz Band)
- Junior Jazz Band
- Concert Band
- Saxophone Ensemble
- Senior Choir
- Junior Choir
- Chamber Choir
- Marimba Band
Four full-time music teachers and thirteen part-time staff provide opportunities for a variety of instruments to be studied. Music is offered as a Matric subject or as an extra-curricular course. Lessons are held during school hours and students are required to play two practical exams per annum. All levels of playing are nurtured with the emphasis being on solo performing opportunities, ensemble playing and playing in one of the many bands at SACS. Entering Royal Schools, Trinity College and Unisa external exams is encouraged and many students play the Grade 8 final exams during their years at SACS. Pupils are also encouraged to enter for various Eisteddfodau, as well as for the three music competitions hosted by SACS. The senior choir of around 60 members performs a challenging and varied repertoire.
Being the highest achievement for a SACS musician, SACS is proud to be able to promote this level of talent and to be able to fill a concert programme of this standard with SACS soloists.
From Grade 8 boys are offered all the opportunities available to music students. Although the Subject Music syllabus begins in Grade 10, music is offered as a specialised component in the Arts and Culture course in Grades 8 and 9. This includes instrumental tuition (one or two practical lessons per week), gaining general musical knowledge in class and participating in any of the bands, ensembles or choirs. Requirement: Boys need to have attained Grade 1 or 2 practical level to be considered for music in Grade 8. (Please note that this is the learner’s level of playing and does not refer to the participation in ABRSM, Trinity or Unisa exams)
Subject Music in Grades 10 – 12: Intensive musical training is provided in all spheres with unique performing and academic opportunities. The entrance requirement is Grade 3 level, practically and theoretically. Each subject music student receives individual practical lessons and subject music lessons which include general music knowledge, music theory and aural training. In Grade 10 boys have the option and are encouraged to write the external ABRSM Grade 5 Theory exam. For advanced pupils, it is an option to do the Grade 6 Theory exam in Grade 11 or 12. In 2014 seven boys played Grade 8 Trinity College or ABRSM exams. Music being a practical art calls for the requirement that all music students participate in at least one of the bands or choirs. Included in the curriculum are composing opportunities using music technology and working with current computer software. Individual lessons are held during school hours and students are required to play two internal practical exams per annum.
Tuition is available extra-murally in all grades, space permitting. Lessons are held during school hours and students are required to play two internal practical exams per annum. Learners are expected to be part of the band or choir programmes and are encouraged to enter Royal Schools, Trinity College or Unisa external exams. If SACS does not have a teacher of a particular instrument, we will recommend one.
PERFORMING OPPORTUNITIES AND GENERAL
It is a primary goal that our musicians have exceptional performing opportunities at SACS. These include an annual Concerto Festival where SACS boys are featured as soloists and are accompanied by a full professional symphony orchestra. Concert opportunities include those at the residence of the British Consulate, the Cape Town Convention Centre, the Waterfront, the Baxter Theatre, St. George’s Cathedral, Kirstenbosch and at the Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Festival, in Grahamstown.
Numerous internal SACS concerts such as the Lunch Hour, Jazz in the Garden, Walter Swanson and Christopher Brown Concerts give all music students unique performing opportunities. For the popular Jazz in the Garden concert, all of the SACS bands, the SACS Big Band, the Concert Band, the Marimba Band and the SACS Choirs perform in a relaxed outdoor environment.
The Big Band’s CD, “All of Us”, conducted and presented by Jazz legend Mike Campbell , marks the department’s commitment to excellence. The Big Band enjoys an enviable reputation as one of the best high school jazz bands in the country and is in much demand.
An annual collaborative concert which takes place in the City Hall, with Rustenburg Girls High School and Rondebosch Boys High School, features a major choral work performed by a massed choir and the three schools’ orchestras. Many musical streams merge together in two very special evenings for all three schools.
SACS hosts a National Music Competition annually and students are able to experience the high standards of a music competition, where a “recital” programme has to be well-prepared and presented at the highest level. With prize money of over R21 000 and two overseas study prizes, the competition is open to anyone playing any instruments. New in 2015 is the Indigenous Music category. The competition is for 13 years to 19 years age-categories with two preliminary rounds and a final round, for which two finalists are chosen in each category. Four adjudicators select and judge the finalists. By hosting a national music competition, SACS intends to nurture the musical development of young people and to enhance its commitment to promoting music at SACS. It is our privilege to introduce this opportunity to young people who have shown commitment to their musical studies.