Instrumental Music Lessons

One of the best ways of enriching your child’s education is to offer them the opportunity to learn a musical instrument.

At John Lyon we place great emphasis on music-making and our ensembles and choirs provide a wide variety of musical experiences.

Music is a means of expression and a way to develop fine motor skills and better coordination. It will give your son or daughter a deeper appreciation of the arts, a positive outlook on life, and it teaches them the importance of dedication, focus and practice. Many studies show that the abstract reasoning skills needed in Science and Mathematics are enhanced with students involved in musical activity.

Learning an instrument will give your child a sense of self-confidence that they will carry with them through life, but most importantly, they will have fun while participating!

About Instrumental Tuition

We are able to offer tuition for the following instruments:

Bass Guitar Oboe
Bassoon Organ
Cello Piano
Clarinet Saxophone
Classical Guitar Singing
Double Bass Trombone
Drums and Percussion Trumpet
Electric Guitar Tuba
Euphonium Viola
Flute Violin
French Horn

Organisation of Music Lessons

Lessons of 40 minutes’ duration are given weekly on a cycle of 30 throughout the academic year, charged at ten lessons per term. Occasionally, it may not be possible to fit in the full allocation of lessons in each individual term but the full 30 will be given during the course of the academic year or an appropriate refund given.

Owing to the Year 11 and Sixth Form pupils undergoing public examinations and study leave in the Summer Term the overall number of lessons given during the Autumn and Spring Terms may be more than the Summer Term. Extra lessons beyond the standard number will be billed separately.

Each pupil is issued with a Practice Book which also forms a way to communicate with parents. Daily practice is to be encouraged at home.

Termly Fees

At the start of each term you will receive an invoice direct from the visiting music tutor; which is payable before the lessons commence. The termly fee is £265 which covers ten lessons, for each instrument your child is learning.

Practical and Theory Examinations

Our teachers offer to prepare and enter pupils for Grades 1 through to Grade 8.  The exam boards are: The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) and Rockschool (RSL).

Aural and Theory of Music

Teachers cover aural tests in instrumental lessons. A class is held for the theory of music, currently on Mondays between 8.00 – 8.30am in the Music School and also an advanced theory and aural class on Thursdays between 8.00 – 8.30am.

Instrument Hire

The School has a small selection of instruments which it rents to parents, but in most cases it will be necessary for parents to make their own hire/purchase arrangements prior to their child’s first lesson. We can supply details of competitive rental companies who also operate ‘buy as you hire’ schemes.

Need Instrument Advice?

If your child would like to play an instrument but is just not sure which one, Mrs Scarlett is available during morning break to discuss options direct with your child.

Discontinuation of Lessons

If at any point you wish tuition to cease, parents must give written notice of discontinuation to the Director of Music and to the instrumental teacher no later than the half term break for lessons to cease at the end of a term. Lessons can only be discontinued at the end of any given term and without due notice parents are liable for the fees for the forthcoming term.

Extra-Curricular Musical Activities

Whether a pupil learns an instrument at John Lyon or outside school, we encourage all to join at least one of our numerous ensembles and choirs. Our current list of Music activities is below.

Activity Time Venue Activity run by:
Year 7 Choir 1.00 – 1.20pm Boyd Campbell Hall Mr Furniss
R&B Group 1.00 – 1.30pm Music Hall Mr Marshall
Music Theory Class 4.05 – 4.45pm Music Annexe Miss Bloor
Activity Time Venue Activity run by:
Flute Choir 10.50 – 11.15am Boyd Campbell Hall/Music Annexe Mrs Evans
Brass Ensemble 10.50 – 11.15am Music Annexe Mrs Molins
Motet Choir (full choir) 1.00 – 1.30pm Music Hall & Annexe Mr Jones
Chamber Orchestra 4.05 – 5.00pm Boyd Campbell Hall Mr Jones & Mr Furniss
Activity Time Venue Activity run by:
The Pride of Lyon’s 8.00 – 8.30am Music Hall Mr Jones
Concert Band 1.00 – 1.30pm Boyd Campbell Hall Mr Furniss
Guitar Ensemble 1.00 – 1.30pm Music Hall Mr Rao
Percussion Ensemble 4.05 – 5.00pm Music Hall Mr Huntington
Music Clinic 4.05 – 4.45pm Music Annexe Mr Furniss & Mr Jones
Activity Time Venue Activity run by:
Advanced Music Theory/Aural Class 8.00 – 8.30am Music Hall Mr Jones
Jazz Band 1.00 – 1.30pm Music Hall Mr Marshall
String Ensemble 1.00 – 1.30pm Boyd Campbell Hall Mr Furniss
Activity Time Venue Activity run by:
Motet Choir (sectional) 1.00 – 1.30pm Music Hall Mr Jones
Rock Jam Sessions 4.05 – 5.00pm Music Hall Mr Rao

Music Summary

There are frequent opportunities to perform throughout the year. The Music School has a busy annual calendar including:

  • Chamber recitals; pupils can try out their examination pieces in our solos concerts
  • Piano and vocal recitals at outside venues
  • House Singing
  • House Music Competition
  • Commemoration Concert; which combines musicians of John Lyon and Harrow School in celebration of our founder, John Lyon
  • Christmas Concert
  • Workshops and masterclasses
  • Junior Music Day; which includes children taking part from local schools
  • Annual musical
  • Cathedral choral visit and Evensong
  • Ensembles Concerts

Music Facilities

  • Music School with performance hall, which houses a Steinway Model D concert grand piano
  • Eight teaching/practice rooms
  • Music Technology Studio
  • Modern recording studio
  • Classroom equipped with latest Macs and a Yamaha grand piano
  • Boyd Campbell Hall with a Steinway Model B concert grand piano

Visiting Music Tutors

Miss Stephanie Bloor (Cello)

Mr Rhys Bowden (Singing)

Mr Huw Clement-Evans (Clarinet, Saxophone and Oboe)

Mr Vivian Davies (Brass)

Mrs Sue Evans (Flute)

Mr Tiernan Godel (Bass guitar)

Mr Tom Hooper (Drums)

Mr Peter Huntington (Drums)

Mr James Kellas (Piano)

Mrs Ruth Molins (Lower Brass)

Mr Luke Rao (Acoustic, Classical and Electric guitar)

Miss Henrietta Ridgeon (Viola and Violin)

Mr Tim Turner (Trumpet and Piano)

Guidelines for Instrumental Students and Parents

  • Check noticeboard frequently for your lesson times. If there is any doubt ask the Music Administrator Mrs Scarlett for help.
  • If your teacher is not in the studio at the suggested time i) practice there for ten minutes ii) if your teacher has not arrived, report to the Director of Music. Your teacher will also wait for up to ten minutes for you, after which your lesson is liable to be forfeit.
  • Under no circumstances alter your lesson time or change a notice yourself.
  • Changes can seldom be made to timetables. If something vital crops up, see your teacher at once. In such circumstances unless you give several days’ notice no change at all can be made.
  • A rota system operates, which means that you should not have a lesson at the same time more than two or three times in a term, unless there are exceptional circumstances.
  • Lessons at a fixed time are not normally possible except in the Sixth Form.
  • Every pupil must have an Instrumental Lesson Card, which records the date and time of your next lesson. There is also a space for the initials of the subject teacher whose lesson you will be missing. You must give that subject tutor AT LEAST 24 HOURS’ NOTICE of a music lesson.
  • Every pupil must have an Instrument Practice Book, which is intended as a record of your year’s work and progress. Remember to take it to every lesson and you should also record in it the time of the next week’s lesson.
  • All instruments brought to school must be clearly marked on the outside of the case with your name, form, school and home address. Keep the case locked and leave it in the store cupboard in the Music School. Make sure you know what serial number your instrument has, for identification if necessary. Only bring them to school for lessons or rehearsals and remember to take them home at the end of the day for practice.
  • Hired Instruments are your responsibility. They must be insured by your parents and kept in good order otherwise you will be liable for repairs or replacement.
  • Insurance: It is important that all instruments brought to school should be insured by your parents, including all instruments on hire from school. This can usually be done under the ‘all-risks’ section of a general household insurance policy.
  • Unsupervised use of rooms and pianos is not allowed at break or lunch times unless you have specific permission from the Director of Music or a full-time member of the Music staff each time you wish to practise.
  • Payment: Instrumental teachers must receive full payment before the first timetabled lesson of each term.
  • Discontinuation of lessons: Parents must give written notice of discontinuation to the Director of Music and to the instrumental teacher no later than the Half Term break for lessons to cease at the end of a term. Lessons can only be discontinued at the end of any given term and without due notice parents are liable for the fees for the forthcoming term.