Berkshire Maestros Job Opportunities Berkshire Music Hub

Musical Summer

Musical Summer

Our Summer Courses this year will all be held face to face at our Reading Music Centre, in small group bubbles. These courses have been specially designed to be:

  • Socially distant
  • Small numbers
  • High quality learning experiences
  • Enriching and engaging
  • Ideal for children aged eight and over
  • Something for everyone
  • Fantastic value for money

Browse through the courses on offer below or see our online brochure. To book your spaces simply click on the BOOK HERE link in each section. This will open our customer portal; click on Start, under Courses and Workshops (scroll down if you are using a mobile device to find this section) click on Choose Activity and select the course or Masterclass you are interested in.

Please note that as spaces are very limited you are strongly advised to book early. Choose from:

Course Title (click on titles to read more) Age Level/experience required
Beautiful Baroque and Characterful Classical - Senior Strings 8 and over Grade 5 to 8
Build your own Ukulele 8 to 13 No experience needed
Creative Composers  11 to 16 Basic understanding of music
Double Bass Day - now cancelled 12 and over Grade 3+
Folk It Up - now cancelled 12 and over Good understanding of your instrument
Grade 5 Music Theory 11 plus Grade 3+
Guitar Groove - Juniors 8 and over No experience needed
Guitar Groove - Seniors - now cancelled 11 to 16 Grade 2 to 5
Introduction to Music Theory 8 and over No experience needed
Jazztastic Piano 8 to 12 Up to Grade 2
Make Some Noise! - Junior Percussion - now cancelled 9 to 14 Grade 1 to Grade 4
Music Production for Video Games 11 to 18 No experience needed
Musicians Wanted - Live Band Workshop - now cancelled    
Piano At The Movies 8 to 12 Up to Grade 2 
Summer Samba - now cancelled 10 to 16 No experience needed
The Delectable World of Disney - Junior Strings 8 and over Grade 1 to 4
The Drum Kit Experience - Beginner Beats 8 to 13 No experience needed

Masterclasses

We are also offering a number of EXCLUSIVE online Masterclasses, with world class musicians (click on the musicians' names to read more):

These will be held virtually via Zoom. They are open to all ages and abilities and offer a unique opportunity to learn from some of the most influential and important musicians in the world. You can join as a performer or an observer - simply click on the BOOK HERE link to secure your place. This will open our customer portal; click on Start, under Courses and Workshops (scroll down if you are using a mobile device to find this section) click on Choose Activity and select the course or Masterclass you are interested in.


Music Production for Video Games

Wednesday 22 - Friday 24 July 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Music Production for video games
Age 11 - 18. No experience required. £120 (three day course)
A three day music technology course focusing on writing music for video games! Students will use Cubase software to write their own compositions inspired by their favourite video games, learning how to create complex soundscapes with virtual instruments. The course will delve into how video game music is created and how much of an impact it has on the feel of a game. Each student will have the opportunity to have their work showcased on a showreel to be shared on the Berkshire Maestros Facebook page.

What you will learn: Students will leave the course with an excellent understanding of using a professional digital audio workstation to create original music using MIDI and virtual instruments. These skills are easily transferrable to GCSE and A Level and serve as an excellent lead on to Berkshire Maestros Music Production Lessons with Rockschool Grades.

What to bring: Laptop, Headphones, USB memory stick, Packed lunch/snacks, Water BOOK HERE

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Musicans Wanted - Live Band Workshop

Musicians Wanted has regretfully been cancelled in favour of increasing capacity on the Music Production for Video Games course.

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The Delectable World of Disney - Junior Strings

Monday 27 - Tuesday 28 July 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Junior Strings
Grades 1-4, violin/viola/cello/double bass £95 (two day course)

Do you know your Incredibles from your Avengers? In need of a bit of Disney
magic? Then this is the course for you! We will start with some warm up activities, moving onto basic music and technical skills, plus plenty of fun and games in group musical activities. Students are encouraged to work hard but also be free to explore new techniques which they will be introduced to on the course. There will be an opportunity to share music in a safe environment at the end of the course.

What you will learn: By the end of the course students will have learnt a number of musical skills which they can continue to work on throughout the summer and with their respective teachers in their instrument lessons.

What to bring: Instrument, Pencil, Music (printed out if possible), Packed lunch/snacks, Water, Lots of energy and creativity. BOOK HERE

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Beautiful Baroque and Characterful Classical - Senior Strings

Monday 27 - Tuesday 28 July 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Senior strings
Grades 5-8, violin/viola/cello/double bass £95 (two day course)

We will work on some baroque and classical chamber music for strings, to include Telemann Canonic Sonatas, Vivaldi Concertos and duets by Mazas. The course will encompass advanced chamber music skills, develop listening, watching, leading and presenting and how to react and work within a team for the best result of the music. There will hopefully be a short presentation of work which has taken place on the course.

What you will learn: By the end of the course students will have learnt a number of musical skills which they can continue to work on throughout the summer and with their respective teachers in their instrument lessons.

What to bring: Instrument, Pencil, Music (printed out if possible), Packed lunch/snacks, Water, Lots of energy and creativity. BOOK HERE

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Introduction to Music Theory

Monday 3 August OR Tuesday 4 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Music Theory
Age 8 and over £50 (one day course)

The ideal course for anyone at Grade 1 standard upwards on any instrument or in singing, this will be a fun day that starts to explore the wonderful world of music theory. A mixture of games, fun activities and learning, this course will help your child to develop a good level of confidence in basic music theory that will help to accelerate their learning on any instrument.

What you will learn: Understanding music notation, key signatures, time signatures, the stave, treble and bass clefs.

What to bring: Pencil, Notepad, Packed lunch/snacks, Water BOOK HERE

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Summer Samba

Monday 3 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Samba
Age 10-16 £50 (one day course)
Experience the exciting world of Brazilian Samba
Experiment with Samba Instruments
Explore new sounds and rhythms
Build confidence and concentration skills
Work together as a team, make friends and have great day!

What you will learn: This course will leave you with a real sense of achievement as you all perform a thrilling Samba piece as a group by the end of the day!

What to bring: Enthusiasm, Bright/carnival shirt/t-shirt, Packed lunch/snacks, Water Regrettably now cancelled

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The Drum Kit Experience - Beginner Beats

Tuesday 4 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Drum Kit
Age 8-13 £50 (one day course)

Learn different rhythms with both hands and feet that make up everything we play on drums. Learn to play rock grooves - impress your friends with some excellent beats!
Experience different styles of drumming - Pop, Rock, Latin, Jazz and Funky… and your favourite songs.
Learn set-up, grip and an introduction to rudiments and theory of drum music to understand the building blocks of drumming.

What you will learn: Fulfil your ambition to be able to play some great drum kit rhythms and fills. Have a much greater understanding of timing, tempo and rhythms - whatever instrument you play!

What to bring: Enthusiasm, Own drum sticks (if preferred - otherwise we can supply sticks and pads, Packed lunch/snacks, Water BOOK HERE

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Creative Composers

Monday 10 August OR Tuesday 11 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Composers
Age 11-16. Basic understanding from school music curriculum lessons needed. £50 (one day course)

An inspiring, practical and immersive one day course helping Key Stage 3 students prepare for the composition coursework element of GCSE Music. During the day we will:
Explore different styles of composition including orchestral, pop and music for film and video games
Learn how to generate original musical ideas and motifs
Build knowledge of harmony to create different moods within a piece
Learn how to develop and extend musical ideas
Develop skills in structuring a piece of music

What you will learn: By the end of the day participants will:
Perform and record their new piece as a group
Be confident using a variety of musical strategies for developing their own composition ideas
Take home a ‘Composers' Toolkit’ of musical devices which they can use at home and at school

What to bring: Your own instrument (if guitar, strings or percussion), Enthusiasm for creating new music, Notepad and pencil, Packed lunch/snacks, Water BOOK HERE

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Folk It Up

Monday 10 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Folk
Age 12 and over. Good understanding of your own instrument needed. £50 (one day course)

Folk music is all about communication, energy and fun. From learning tunes by ear, to layering up riffs to create unique arrangements, this course is all about getting creative with folk melodies from the British Isles and further afield.

What you will learn: This course will teach you how to work aurally with folk music, to communicate with an ensemble and how to develop creative arrangements of folk tunes.

What to bring: Your own instrument (strings, guitar, percussion, keyboard, ukulele, mandolin), Packed lunch/snacks, Water Regrettably now cancelled

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Piano At the Movies

Tuesday 11 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Piano At the Movies
Age 8-12, up to Grade 2. £50 (one day course)

Come and improve your piano and keyboard  skills! This course is ideal for pianists up to Grade 2 who are able to play and read bass clef C to high C confidently. We will be warming up, learning some fantastic pieces all together, and having a go at some improvisation. There will be plenty of parts so there will always be something you can play easily.

What you will learn: Playing as part of a group, Improvising, Improving your sight reading

What to bring: Your own keyboard/power supply if you have them, Music stand, Packed lunch/snacks, Water. (There may be a limited number of keyboards available.) BOOK HERE

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Make Some Noise! - Junior Percussion

Thursday 13 - Friday 14 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Percussion
Age 9-14, Grade 1-4 £95 (two day course)
The aim of this course is to introduce percussionists and kit players to the opportunities of playing tuned percussion. Students will learn how simple it is to pick up the basics and how exciting the results can be. No tuned percussion experience is necessary, just an understanding of stick technique and bags of enthusiasm!

What you will learn: Students will work on one or two pieces during the day, and will learn confidence and skills on tuned percussion instruments. They will work towards a performance at the end of the second day.

What to bring: Own sticks (if preferred, otherwise we can supply some), Packed lunch/snacks, Water Regrettably now cancelled

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Guitar Groove - Juniors

Thursday 14 - Friday 15 OR Monday 17 - Tuesday 18 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Guitar Groove
Age 8 and over, Beginners to Grade 1 £95 (two day course)

A chance to spend two days playing guitar in an ensemble at
Berkshire Maestros’ Reading HQ. We will learn and practise a diverse range of repertoire and performance skills. There will also be warm up and technique sessions on both days.

What you will learn: At the end of the course students will feel more confident about playing in ensemble and be ready to join one of our music centre guitar groups. They will also have a warm up routine they can use to help their practice sessions at home. The course will conclude with a short performance.

What to bring: Guitar, Footstool, Clip on guitar tuner, Packed lunch/snacks, Water BOOK HERE

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Double Bass Day

Monday 17 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Double Bass
Age 12 and over, Grade 3+ £50 (one day course)

A great opportunity to develop your skills working together with other Double Bass players. We will be working with chamber music written specifically for Double Bass ensembles, and with excerpts from the orchestral repertoire.

What you will learn: A greater understanding of musical communication in a chamber music setting, how to improve your tuning, sound production and abilities to play together in a section of Double Basses.

What to bring: Your instrument, Packed lunch/snacks, Water Regrettably now cancelled

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Jazztastic Piano

Tuesday 18 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Jazz Piano
Age 8-12, up to Grade 2. £50 (one day course)

Come and improve your piano and keyboard skills! This course is ideal for pianists up to Grade 2 who are able to play and read bass clef C to high C confidently. We will be warming up, learning some fantastic pieces all together, and having a go at some improvisation. There will be plenty of parts so there will always be something you can play easily.

What you will learn: Playing as part of a group, Improvising, Improving your sight reading

What to bring: Your own keyboard/power supply if you have them, Music stand, Packed lunch/snacks, Water. (There may be a limited number of keyboards available.) BOOK HERE

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Guitar Groove - Seniors

Thursday 20 - Friday 21 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Guitar Groove
Age 11-16, Grades 2-5 £95 (two day course)

A chance to spend two days playing guitar in an ensemble at Berkshire Maestros’ Reading HQ. We will learn and practise a diverse range of repertoire and performance skills. There will also be warm up and technique sessions on both days.

What you will learn: At the end of the course, the students will feel more confident about playing in ensemble and be ready to join one of our music centre guitar groups. They will also have a warm up routine they can use to help their practice sessions at home. The course will conclude with a short performance.

What to bring: Guitar, Footstool, Clip on guitar tuner, Packed lunch/snacks, Water Regrettably now cancelled

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Build Your Own Ukulele

Thursday 20 - Friday 21 August 2020 9.30am - 3.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Ukulele
Age 8-13, Beginner to intermediate £95 (two day course)

A chance to build your own ukulele! The course would suit those who are:
- taking up ukulele for the first time and need guidance and inspiration,
- looking for a smaller, more manageable instrument as a first step towards
playing guitar,
- already learning guitar and want to widen their musical palette and
enhance their skills.
Whatever your motivation, you will benefit from our expert tuition, make friends with like-minded individuals, make great music and have lots of fun! It is not necessary to be able to read music or play any instruments before signing up to this course – all experience levels are welcome

What you will learn: Build and design your own ukulele, Learn the ukulele basics,
Master some popular tunes.

What to bring: Old clothes or apron for painting, Packed lunch/snacks, Water BOOK HERE

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Grade 5 Music Theory

Tuesday 25 - Thursday 27 August 2020 9.30am - 4.30pm (Registration 9.15am) Theory Course
Age 11 and over, Grade 3+ on instrument/voice £250 (three day course + refresher day)
Another intensive three-day music theory course to prepare students for the ABRSM Grade 5 Music Theory exam. The course is aimed at young people of secondary school age who need to pass Grade 5 Music Theory ahead of their Grade 6+ practical, or students wanting to enhance their theoretical knowledge in preparation for GCSE Music. The course is open to all students, including those who are not students of Berkshire Maestros. For full details click here.

What you will learn: Students need to commit to working through all the homework set, including seven past papers (provided). There will be a refresher session between
5.00pm and 8.00pm on Tuesday 3 November 2020. The ABRSM Music Theory  exam will take place on Tuesday 10 November 2020.

What to bring: Pencils, A rubber, A sharpener, A ruler, Packed lunch/snacks, Water BOOK HERE

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Glyn and Helen Williams Masterclass

Thursday 23 July 2020 6.00pm - 8.00pm Glyn and Helen Williams
All ages and abilities welcome £10

Pick up your instrument for this Zoom Masterclass suitable for all brass players. Through a mixture of performances, group exercises and Q&A sessions you will learn about the challenges of being a brass band musician, as well as tips and tricks on how to improve your playing.
Course tutors Helen and Glyn Williams from the world famous Cory Band will share their experience as top brass musicians to help you improve your playing and ensemble skills
Be inspired to hone your skills with these great musicians from the world’s number one ranked brass band
Open to all brass players. All you will need is an instrument, a laptop or tablet and an internet connection!

BOOK HERE

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Helen Sanderson Masterclass

Wednesday 12 August 2020 6.00pm - 8.00pm Helen Sanderson
All ages and abilities welcome £10

Calling all guitarists! Join in this online Masterclass with Head of Guitar Performance at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Helen Sanderson.
Learn through group sessions how to improve your technique and get important advice on your daily warm up routine.
There will be an opportunity for some students to present a solo piece to Helen and gain tips and tricks on how to improve their performance.
Helen will share her experiences as a prestigious performer, composer and educator. Ask questions on how to improve your guitar playing and musicianship.
Open to all guitarists. All you will need is an instrument, a laptop or tablet and an internet connection!

Regrettably now cancelled

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Tasmin Little Masterclass

Thursday 27 August 2020 6.00pm - 7.30pm Tamsin Little
All ages and abilities welcome £10

Join us for this exciting violin Masterclass from one of the world’s leading violin solo performers Tasmin Little.
Tasmin will share with you her experiences from a multi award winning and varied solo career that includes performances in some of the most prestigious venues in the world.
There will be an opportunity for some students to present solo pieces to Tasmin. Others may prefer to observe but will still gain a lot of knowledge on how to improve their violin playing.
Don’t miss out on this rare opportunity to meet and learn from a world class musician
Open to all violinists. All you will need is an instrument, a laptop or tablet and an internet connection

BOOK HERE Photo: Benjamin Ealovega

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