Choral Majors (formerly known as the Junior Vocal Stream)
The Choral Major option is designed for students entering Years 7 & 8 whose primary or preferred medium of musical expression is voice. Students designated Choral Majors [i.e., choristers] receive expert vocal coaching, choral training and associated performance opportunities. Their classroom music is taught by Hungarian-trained, Kodály music specialists.
The Choral Major option is restricted to the junior school [Years 7 & 8] in recognition of the physiological changes that take place in the teenage voice during the middle years of high school.
In preparation for this period of change, choristers must apply themselves diligently to their chosen instrument (preferably an orchestral instrument) in order that they reach a standard commensurate with that of Year 9 instrumental students.
Students accepted as Choral Majors may also be offered the opportunity to become members of Gondwana Choirs / Sydney Children’s Choir. Those who wish to be considered for membership should be aware that they will be required to attend a placement test with Gondwana Choirs.
JUNIOR VOCAL STREAM
The Junior Vocal Stream at the Conservatorium High School, an educational collaboration with Sydney Children’s Choir, was introduced in 2012 and ran for seven years. The programme initiated a fundamental change in the focus of the school’s approach to music pedagogy; the approach now is essentially vocally driven. During this period, the school was fortunate to have join its music staff two of Australia’s most sought-after practitioners of the Kodály philosophy of music-education, Ms Réka Csernyik and Dr Michael Bradshaw. Thanks to their work, the Conservatorium High now has a clear and consistent methodology for classroom music. The Kodály-based approach that used be the preserve of just the JVS, is now the norm for the whole Con High. And the results speak for themselves. The exceptional standard of the school’s various vocal ensembles is well known and the school’s flag-ship group, the Conservatorium High Chamber Choir, has been acknowledged as one of this country’s finest vocal ensembles.
Over the seven years of the JVS, our educational collaboration helped Sydney Children’s Choir in a very practical way, by making the Con High’s Conservatorium facilities available to the Choir at no cost. The School is proud to have been able to support this fine organisation with assistance-in-kind worth well in excess of $300,000.