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Music Theory Grade 8 course

Music Theory Grades 6 to 8 Course

Tuesday 6 to Thursday 8 April 2021
9.15am - 4.15pm

Registration: 9.00am on the first day

Reading Music Centre, Stoneham Court, 100 Cockney Hill, Reading, RG30 4EZ

Refresher Day: Tuesday 8 June 5.00pm - 8.00pm

Cost - excellent value at ONLY £250

Course leader: Christian Dawson

Berkshire Maestros is delighted to present a brand new intensive three-day music theory course to prepare students for the ABRSM Grade 8 Music Theory exam. This course is for students who have already passed their Grade 5 Music Theory exam and are working towards their Grade 7, Grade 8 or Diploma practical exam. It is also suitable for those students who have passed Grade 5 Music Theory and would like to enhance their theoretical knowledge in preparation for GCSE or A Level Music*, or before studying music at university or conservatoire. The course is open to all students, including those who are not students of Berkshire Maestros.

* Advanced students who are not yet old enough to study GCSE or A Level Music will be admitted to the course at the discretion of their instrumental teacher.

This course represents excellent value at only £250.00. Payment plan options are available if you would like to stagger your payments for the course. Please e-mail our Finance department using to request setting this up.

Available places on this course will be strictly limited to allow for appropriate social distancing within the classroom. Please note: if Covid restrictions make it impossible for us to provide this course face-to-face, we will provide teaching online on the dates of the course and subsequent Tuesday afternoons (4.00pm to 6.00pm). These sessions will be recorded and accessible for the students to watch during the week if they cannot attend. However, we do strongly recommend joining the sessions to make the most of learning the content of the course.

Before the Course:
Students are strongly advised to refresh their knowledge of the material covered at Grade 5 before attending the course. This can be by working through some past papers or workbooks, and re-reading The AB Guide to Theory Part 1. In addition, reading The AB Guide to Theory Part 2 is highly recommended to prepare for the new advanced material that will be covered during the course. The class will be moving at pace to cover all the topics so all work done in advance will help students keep up with the content and get the most out of the course.

Students will need to bring with them

  • Pencils, a rubber, a sharpener, a ruler
  • A packed lunch and any snacks to last throughout the day
  • Plenty to drink

After the Course:
Students will need to commit to working through seven past papers (provided) after the course and before the exam. Experienced Berkshire Maestros' tutors will mark and grade the past papers.

To maximise their chance of passing the exam, pupils must be prepared to undertake all homework set during and at the end of the course. There will be a refresher session 5.00 - 8.00pm on Tuesday 8 June 2021 (included in the cost of the course) - this will take place at Reading Music Centre.

The ABRSM Music Theory exam will take place on Saturday 19 June 2021. The exam must be arranged and paid for separately and is not included in the fee for this course. It will be your responsibility to enter the exam yourself; all the details on how to do this will be provided.

Click here for a map to the location of Reading Music Centre, RG30 4EZ

REGISTER HERE on our customer portal to join this course.

When you register you will be required to commit to:

  1. Revising all the content studied for Grade 5 prior to the course. This means completing at least 2 practice papers before the course as well as being completely familiar with all the content of The AB Guide to Music Theory Part 1.
  2. Completing and submitting all the homework that is set following the course. This will take the form of completing a past paper and submitting it to be marked on a weekly basis.
  3. Making all necessary arrangements to register myself/my child for the ABRSM Grade 8 Music Theory exam.

Please do not register on the course if you are not able to make these commitments to successfully passing the exam.

Music Theory Grade 8 course


Obtaining the books

The music theory textbooks and past papers can be ordered from any music shop. Please click on the links below to be taken to the website of various specialist music shops or email them directly.

Hickies (Reading)
E-mail Hickies:

Dawkes (Maidenhead)
E-mail Dawkes:

Hogan Music (Newbury)
E-mail Hogan:

Blackwell's (Oxford and online)
E-mail Blackwell's:

ABRSM Shop (online)
Contact ABRSM Shop:


AB Guide to Music Theory Part 2



AB Guide to Music Theory Part1

The AB Guide to Music Theory Part 2 takes a topic based approach to all the additional content on the Grade 8 music theory exam syllabus. It builds upon the content of Part 1.

The AB Guide to Music Theory Part 1 takes a topic based approach to everything that is on the Grade 5 music theory exam syllabus, explaining the topic in detail.

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