Performing Arts reintroduces fundamental music theory class

Fundamentals of Music class, formerly known as Basic Music Theory, will be brought back next year by Performing Arts Teacher Mark Hilt to prepare students for AP Music Theory.

Basic Music Theory will cover sight singing, ear training and basic melodic dictation, skills for those students who plan to advance to the more rigorous AP class, Hilt said.

“What I have found in the last four years after getting rid of the Fundamentals class is that we just have to move so fast in AP music theory because there is so much to cover,” he said.

The class will also give students a better understanding of whether or not they want to move on to the AP level.

Although open to all three grade levels, the course is particularly useful for sophomores, Hilt said, as the transition from the middle school to the upper school is a challenging process, and not all sophomores are prepared for taking an AP course.

“I was hearing that kids were trying to find a way  to get as many APs in their schedule as possible, who might not have been on the track to take one in math or science, and were erroneously assuming that an AP in music without a prerequisite other than an interview with Mr. Hilt was going to be easy,” Performing Arts Department Head Rees Pugh said. “They were in  for a brutal shock because music theory is complicated stuff.”

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