Click HERE to hear The High School Choir
Click HERE to hear a live recording of The High School Orchestra


Ms B Bourke (Subject Co-ordinator)
Ms R Phillips

Subject Overview

Music education aims to develop the three core areas of learning – performing, composing and listening – through a series of interrelated musical activities at the school.

Junior Cycle

Music at Junior Certificate is aimed at developing performing, composing and listening skills through a series of musical activities. It is assessed by practical examination and a combined aural and written examination at the end of the third year. A new specification of Junior Cycle Music is expected to be introduced in September 2018.

 Form 4 - Transition Year programme

The School offers two options for Transition Year students.


  1. Option C is timetabled for a weekly double period of which there are two modules annually. The Rock/Pop module offers students an opportunity to develop performance skills on a weekly basis in preparation for the end of module show.
  2. Option D is also timetabled for a weekly double period and is entitled ‘Music Composition’. Similarly, this module runs twice yearly with module one from September to Christmas and module two from Christmas to the summer. This module aims to develop student compositional and creative skills and to enable them to put these skills to use when writing and scoring a song for a variety of instruments with the eventual aim of recording the song professionally and producing a CD.

Senior Cycle

Leaving Certificate Music involves a series of musical activities within each of the three core areas of musical experience – performing, listening and composing. Students choose from a variety of solo and/or group performing activities. In composing, students develop an understanding of musical structure and form, while the listening component provides for a rich aural experience through exposure to music of different genres and styles.

 Additional information

  1. The High School awards by competition up to two Music Scholarships per year to pupils proficient in any orchestral string, wind or brass instrument up to at least Grade 3 standard of Associated Board or its equivalent. The value of the scholarships will be 50% of the annual tuition fee and the competition will involve a practical test and interview. Competitions take place annually in April/May.
  2. The High School boasts a large orchestra which rehearses every Tuesday from 4.00- 5.15pm.
  3. There is a School choir which rehearses every Thursday from 4.00 – 5.00pm. The choir performs for the school community at all the major occasions throughout the year including Prize Giving, Carol Services and The Annual Summer Concert. The choir has recently performed at Evensong in St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
  4. HSD students perform regularly at Assembly. The genres of music performed are very varied, including everything  from jazz to classical and Irish traditional (usually during Seachtain na Gaeilge) to rock/pop. Scholarship students are expected to play once a year.
  5. The Music Department offers music tuition in piano, guitar and drums. Students have their lessons timetabled at a different time each week during the school day but they can also opt to have lessons that cross over breaks/lunchtimes.
  6. The 5th Year Play/Musical is a major calendar event for all concerned. This is held in November and usually alternates every second year between a play and a musical. In 2014 the group performed ‘Bugsy Malone’.
  7. The Annual Summer Concert in May has grown in popularity in recent years. The varied program ranges from solo performances on individual instruments to orchestral and choral performances. String quartets, jazz groups, brass ensembles and duets have featured in recent years.
  8. The Annual Carol Service is a very significant event in the life of the Music Department and the School community.  It is held at Zion Church and features the School choir and orchestra.