At Wycombe Abbey School we are very pleased to announce 17 of our pupils from years 8 to 12 were the FIRST Chinese pupils to every complete grades in the Rock School’s Music Production Specification and we are just awaiting confirmation if we are the first pupils in Asia! Pupils sat Grade 1, 2, 3 and L. Ling in Year 12 sat Grade 5 which is equivalent to GCSE. The pupils had to complete a piece of coursework over the last 6 weeks and also sit an on-line exam on music production theory. The coursework involved writing music in a professional scenario, similar to music producers and engineers are paid to do in the actual music industry. Grade 1 involved writing a bass line and melody over a hip hop beat and chord progression. Grade 2 involved choosing loops from a huge list and arranging them into a structured arrangement and then pupils had to make their own drum beat to enhance the arrangement. Grade 3 got given a chord progression and created their own riffs based on these and then turned a short drum loop into a whole verse and chorus. Grade 5 was especially challenging as they had to work out a piano part from an audio file and re-layer this and mix it back into the arrangement. Then a vocal melody and additional layers had to be added to enhance certain sections.
The Grade 1 to 3 exams involved multiple choice questions on music theory like parts of a mixing desk, professional microphones and their application as well as knowledge of studio equipment, computers and music software. Grade 5 went into further depth but also covered acoustics, studio design and the application of complex studio equipment.
This year we have also had lots of pupils sign up to Music production lessons as well as current pupils who are still developing their skills. Mr. Larsson taught these pupils and they were are seen pictured holding some of the new equipment we have recently purchased to engross learners into the wonderful world of music production and audio engineering. As a school we have invested heavily in music production equipment and look forward to opening a small recording space for pupils to be able to record their creative ideas to perhaps be the next music producers of China, so watch this space!