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Mr Brett Udal (Director of Music)
Mr Jaco Dippenaar (Choirmaster)
Mr Michael Tonkin (Music Production Specialist)

The academic curriculum for Music is subdivided into a Junior phase (Arts and Culture) and a Senior phase (Subject Music).


Arts and Culture is taken by all boys in Grade 8 and Grade 9. 


All Grade 8 boys are taught to play an instrument with either full time or peripatetic music staff within a group context. This is not charged to the parents but, is part of the academic programme. These lessons take place during class for half the duration of the 80-minute lesson (40-minute group lesson) and lasts for half a year. 

Instruments offered are Violin, Trombone, Saxophone, Voice and Guitar.

The theoretical course content is based upon Trinity Grade 1 theory with modularized course themes and practical components, such as GarageBand group projects.  


This learning area is commonly referred to as 'Arts and Culture' which follows the prescribed National Curriculum. The theoretical course content is based upon Trinity Grade 2 theory with modularized course themes and practical components, such as studying Protest Music, different music genres and more advanced Garage Band group projects.  


Music in Grade 10 to Grade 12 is offered as a designated IEB matriculation subject at Hilton College, following the National Curriculum Statement. Currently Hilton College has 14 boys taking Music as a subject in 2016.

Subject Music is divided between four Learning Areas:
Learning Outcome 1: Practical
Learning Outcome 3: Theory
Learning Outcome 2: Improvisation/ Composition/ Arranging
Learning Outcome 4: History

The four learning outcomes are covered equally over the 12-day cycle. The inclusion of Music Technology and other music related topics in the curriculum allows the students to have a wider focus than was allowed under the previous curriculum.


Each Subject Music learner is required to play an internally-assessed Practical Music examination each term.

It is expected that pupils will play a minimum of TWO Grade 5 pieces and ONE Grade 6 (UNISA, ABRSM, Trinity) piece during their final IEB External Practical Music examination in their matric year, including Scales or Technical exercises as well. However, at Hilton College, we aim for our boys to achieve at least a Grade 7 music level.

For instrumentalists a variety of TEN different scales (Maj./Min./Arp./Chrom./ Dom.7th;Dim. 7th) must be played from your prescribed syllabus scale requirements. Singers must present the prescribed Vocal Studies/scales from their Grade.

Sight-reading/sight-singing and aural training:
Boys are expected to fulfill the external music examining bodies requirements, as stipulated in their respective syllabi. Boys are trained either in Subject Music class (academic learners) or, with their peripatetic instrumental music teacher (non-academic learners).  


Subject Music learners will be encouraged to write and play externally-assessed Theory and Practical music examinations (UNISA, ABRSM; Trinity Rock & Pop, Rockschool; Trinity Guildhall), which are usually held in April, August, September and October. Entrance to these examinations will be assessed upon an individual basis and in consultation with the parents.    


Individual instrumental tuition, currently available in 2016, is available to boys in:

Classical Piano (including Contemporary & Jazz Piano)
Classical, Folk, Electric and Bass Guitar
Clarinet, Saxophone, Bassoon and Flute
Trumpet and Trombone
Violin & Cello
Percussion & Drums
Music Production
DJ-Mixing (seasonal)

The Hilton College Music Department, however, does provide for boys whose preferred instrument is not listed above but with prior consultation. Professionally trained and qualified peripatetic music staff are employed from Durban, Pietermaritzburg and surrounding areas.

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