As a gazetted ‘Music Program of Excellence’, the Birkdale Music Performance Centre offers a high profile music program with a wide variety of Choral and Instrumental Ensembles for students to participate in. Students are selected based on their musicality and sometimes by an audition process, as number limits apply to some groups. Involvement in eisteddfods, school and district competitions and other events is encouraged. Many of the groups wear a smart looking uniform when representing the school. Costs are involved in some ensembles. Some groups are non- competitive and are for enjoyment only.
Currently within the Music Program, students are able to participate in a variety of ensembles including:
Choral Ensembles:
·      Bumblebees Choir (Prep and Year 1)
·      Junior Choir (Year 2 – Year 4)
·      Senior Choir (Year 5 – Year 6)
·      Performance Group (Year 3 – Year 6) 
String Ensembles:
·      Junior Strings (Year 3)
·      Intermediate Strings (Year 4 - 5)
·      Senior Strings (Year 5 – 6)
Instrumental Ensembles:
·      Junior Band (Year 4)
·      Senior Band (Year 5 – 6)
·      ‘INFINITY’ Rock Band (Top 7 students)
After school with Private tutors:
·      Guitar (Year 3 – 6)
·      Ukulele (Year 1 onwards – Preps considered on individual talents)
Continuing in 2016:
Choral Development Program
The Choral Development Program (CDP) will incorporate students from Years 4 – 6. The program has been specifically created to expand Birkdale’s choral repertoire to more diverse and complex works. The focus will be on developing techniques in breathing, tone, pitch, diction and harmony. Students will be invited into the program based on a selection criteria, which identifies students’ suitability. Contracts will be signed by students and parents indicating their commitment for the year. The program will run weekly. Year 4 participants will rehearse for 45 minutes. Year 5 – 6 participants will rehearse for an hour and three quarters.
Super Singers
This ensemble will be open to any interested students, from Prep – Year 6, with a love of singing, who would like to be a part of a singing ensemble which is not competitive, but for enjoyment only. The ensemble will suit students wishing to improve their vocal skills and repertoire will include current, popular songs. Chorolography skills (singing with actions) will also be developed. Rehearsals will be held weekly in a morning tea in the Music Room commencing in Term 2.
This is a choir which is made up of 35 talented girls and boys from Prep and Year One. They have been identified through Music lessons and a small, fun audition. They rehearse once a week in the music room at lunch time, and learn correct singing technique, a variety of fun songs and some groovy moves. They have the opportunity to perform at a number of events throughout the year, including school assemblies and school functions. As a costume they wear the school uniform with black shoes and a special Bumblebee hat which is issued at each performance. Fees apply.
This choir consists of 60 students selected from Year 2 – Year 4. They rehearse once a week before school in the Music Room. They work on developing correct singing technique and sing a wide variety of choral repertoire. They begin learning about simple harmony and basic 2 part singing. They participate in school events and Eisteddfods which occur throughout the year. Fees apply.
The Senior Choir is a dedicated group of selected students from Year 5 – 6. They rehearse once a week during school time. At this senior level, the choir is able to work on more complex repertoire including songs in unison, 2 part and 3 part harmony. This requires students to have a good ear for music and a good sense of pitch and timing. Students are also offered opportunities for solo parts throughout the year. They participate in school events and Eisteddfods which occur throughout the year. Fees apply.
The Performance Group gives students who love to sing and perform an extra opportunity to be involved in choral work. Students from the Junior Choir and Senior Choir who demonstrate the ability to sing well, perform with expression, move rhythmically, and show commitment to the Music Program, are selected to join the Performance Group (Year 3 – 6).  The main aim of the group is to provide entertainment of a high standard and have a lot of fun while they’re doing it! The repertoire is a mixture of current pop songs to older classics. Opportunities for solos are given throughout the year. As it is a very popular group, number limits apply. Rehearsals are held once a week before school in the Music Room. Fees apply.
Students in Year 4 – 6, who are accepted into the Junior and Senior Choir, are also offered a unique opportunity to participate in the Choral Development Program (CDP), as part of Birkdale’s Music Program of Excellence. The program has been specifically created to put extra time into developing Birkdale students’ voices, which in turn will enable Birkdale’s choral repertoire to include more diverse and complex works.
Developing the singing voice is a key focus of the CDP. Singing is a skill that requires highly developed muscle reflexes. Singing does not require much muscle strength but it does require a high degree of muscle coordination. Individuals can develop their voices further through the careful and systematic practice of both songs and vocal exercises. The group will work on developing techniques in breathing, tone, pitch, diction and harmony.
Students will be invited into the program based on a selection criteria. The program will run weekly through a lunch hour and into the afternoon session. NO fees apply.
Birkdale State School students may join our Strings program as early as Year 3.  At the end of the year, all current Year 2 students complete a simple musical ability test.  As teachers, we realise that not all students will show their true musical potential through a written test.  Therefore, to gain an overall perspective on your child’s abilities, the child’s classroom teacher is also consulted. The Strings teacher will audition students who have indicated a desire to be a part of the strings program. Students are notified of their success in gaining a position via letter. If spots are available after the Year 3 beginners have been selected, they will be offered to older students. Each year students indicate if they are continuing in the program or not.
Students at Birkdale State School may join the band program in Years 4, 5 or 6.  At the end of the year, the current Year 3 students complete a musical ability test.  On receipt of an ‘Expression of Interest’ form from your child, the band teacher will carry out a simple practical test with interested students to determine if the desired instrument is suitable (e.g: size etc).  If it isn’t, an alternate instrument is suggested. Students are notified of their success in gaining a position via letter. If spots are available after the Year 4 beginners have been selected, they will be offered to older students. Each year students indicate if they are continuing in the program or not.
All instrumental students will come out of their normal classroom to have one ½ hour lesson with their instrumental teacher per week.  During this time, students progress through a book and learn songs for performances.  Your child will develop many wonderful techniques required for successful playing and performing.  What a fantastic opportunity!
Students will have a ROTATING TIMETABLE.  This method of timetabling has been put to the test in previous years and proven to be very popular with students, parents and classroom teachers. The rotating timetable means that your child will have his/her instrumental lesson at a different time each week.  Therefore students will not be missing out on the same classroom timeslot every week. It is imperative that students keep this timetable in an easily accessible spot so that it can be checked regularly. Classroom teachers will also have a copy of the timetable on display in rooms. Students should arrive at their lesson promptly at the correct time. It is the students’ responsibility to catch up any classwork missed due to the instrumental lesson.
Preference for hiring school instruments is given to beginner students: Year 3 students (Strings) and Year 4 students (Brass/Woodwind/Percussion). Once these instruments have been allocated, if there are any school instruments remaining, other students may receive one to hire. Otherwise, continuing students are expected to purchase their own, or arrange hire through an outside vendor.
Birkdale is fortunate enough to have its very own ROCK BAND. After auditions, the top seven or eight instrumental and choral students are selected from the school to participate in this extra group. They rehearse once a week and perform rock classics to today’s pop hits. They are always a massive hit for audiences at Birkdale and out in the community. 
Guitar and Ukulele
Lessons are held after school, in the Music room, with outside providers. Small groups of beginners learn the basics of their instruments and work towards performances in, and outside, school.
Choral Ensembles and Instrumental Music are expensive school activities that require co-funding (Parents /School) to ensure the Program continues to run and improve.
If your child HIRES a school instrument there is a HIRING FEE to be paid. The hiring fee covers the cost of instrument repairs and servicing at the end of the year.  (There is no hiring fee if your child uses his/her own instrument).  Please note, if your child decides within one month of tuition that he/she doesn’t wish to continue with instrumental lessons, the Hiring Fee will be refunded in full – (subject to the condition of the instrument).
String and Band Instruments
(Students will take turns through the year to borrow the Glockenspiel)
The General Levy applies to ALL instrumental, string and choir students. It is one payment for the year. This covers the cost of general resources used for each group. This payment must be completed by the end of Term 1.
Band Resource (Jnr & Snr)
String Ensemble Resource:
Junior Strings
Intermediate Strings
Senior Strings
Bumblebees Choir
Junior Choir
Senior Choir
Performance Group
Ukulele & Guitar
Paid to the provider: $11/half hour
Please note: there are no fees to participate in the Super Singers or Choral Development Program
Most ensembles have their own, smart uniforms which are worn for performances. Adjudicators often comment on the professional look of our groups. While the Junior ensembles incorporate the school uniform, the Senior groups will wear long black pants, shirts and a coloured vest or tie and cummerbund. The uniforms for each group are handed out after payment has been received for the General Levy in Term 1. Some parts of the uniform are provided by the school, other parts are to be provided by the parent. Further information about uniforms is sent home at the time of issue.
Throughout the school year there will be a number of events at which different music groups will be asked to perform. Some of the usual events are:
School Assemblies
Special School Events, Ceremonies and Awards
Competitions (FANFARE) and Eisteddfods (Term 2)
Redlands Ukulele Festival (Term 2)
Redlands Eisteddfod (Term 3)
Instrumental SHOWCASE (Term 3)
REDFEST (Term 3)
Night of Music (Term 4)
Music: Count Us In (Term 4)
Birkdale State School Centenary Celebration (Nov 27, Term 4)
Birkdale Community Christmas Carols (Term 4)
All students within the program are expected to attend each event so that the group sound is not compromised. Parents and students are responsible for ensuring students have the correct equipment and uniform.
Parent Helpers
Each year there are several fundraising events which the music students are involved in. Parent support and assistance in the lead up to these events is essential. If you are able to help out in some way, keep an eye out for Music Parent meetings. They are usually held on a Monday after assembly, or after school, and only as necessary. Previous parent assistance has been outstanding!
Classroom Music
Music is terrific fun at Birkdale with all classes receiving weekly lessons as follows:
Prep: half hour/week
Yr 1 – 3: 1 hour/week
Yr 4 – 6: half hour/week
The focus of these lessons is to instil a love of music in children. They will enjoy developing skills and increasing their music knowledge through singing, dancing and instrument playing. They will be given multiple opportunities to engage with live musicians through incursions and excursions throughout the year.
Last reviewed 12 March 2020
Last updated 12 March 2020