Music Performance (Production)

BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma

Course Entry Requirements

4 A*-C grades at GCSE or equivalent in 3 or more subjects including a minimum grade 4/D in GCSE English Language.

You must be able to play an instrument or sing confidently in front of others to a good standard. You will be required to informally audition in the first week of this course.

If you are interested in joining the College we will arrange a meeting with an experienced subject counsellor who will help you to choose courses that best suit your ambitions and achievements.

All entry requirement details are correct at the time of publication, September 2018, however, the College may need to make some changes by September 2019 in the light of student demand, staff availability and external factors beyond the College’s control.

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What will I study?

Year One Units

Unit 24 – Music project

Throughout this unit you will learn about the music industry and how to form, plan and create a music project.  The commercial implications such as marketing will be considered as you work toward putting on a festival.  You will undertake meetings and finally perform in the festival.  Your assessment is split into 3 assignments focusing on work you will do in class and the rehearsal studio. The assignments are split into tasks with marks awarded for each which may include reproducing particular elements.

Unit 23 – Music performance techniques

Throughout this unit you will learn about how to improve your performance and how to polish your instrumental technique.  This unit focuses on the production of the tone, timing and authority of a professional player. The development of rhythmic control and solid timing is fundamental.  Your assessment is split into assignments focusing on work you will do in class. The assignments are split into tasks with marks awarded for each which may include reproducing performance technical elements.

Unit 30- Pop music in practice

Throughout this unit you will learn about the different musical genres from the 1950’s to the present day.  After the history is discovered you will then prepare and perform 4 songs from 4 different genres to establish the knowledge you have uncovered.  Your assessment is split into 2 assignments focusing on work you will do in class.

Year Two Units

Unit 40 – Working and developing a musical ensemble.

Throughout this unit you will learn about the nature of ensemble work by allowing you to become part of a musical ensemble concentrating on the process of working together to produce a musically and artistically satisfying result.

Unit 18 – Modern Music in Practice

Throughout this unit you will learn about modern music from 1900 to the present day looking at not just the genre themselves, but how they reflect important events of the day and developing trends. You will go and see live performances that will enable you to have a more engaging relationship with the music, before embarking on two solo and two ensemble performances for a college audience. This unit never fails to inspire and motivate.

Unit 21 – Music in the community

During this unit you will undertake a community music project working with a chosen community group. You will ultimately research the role of a community musician, deliver workshops based on particular themes, keep a working log, attend meetings and write songs based on your workshop findings.

What skills do I need?

  • Enthusiasm
  • Commitment
  • Energy
  • Music skills – a good ability to play an instrument or sing/read music or guitar tabs

Examining Board


Why should I study this course?

You should choose to study music if you enjoy learning about music with an interest in live sound and practical performance. It is a practical course with many opportunities for playing your instrument that forms parts of your assessments. You need a keen interest in music and the ability to play a contemporary or classical instrument such as a guitar, drums, violin etc, or have the confidence to sing to a good standard.  If you are experienced in music already your skills will be put to good use especially in the units that require you to perform.

The course is mainly practical but you will need to complete some written work. The Certificate in Music Performance is equivalent to 1 AS. If you progress to the second year you will obtain the Subsidiary Diploma which is equivalent to 1 full A Level.

How is the course assessed?

The course is structured by assignments and every task you are asked to do will feature within one of the assignments. There are usually 3 assignments per unit per year. Most of the assignments include recordings, performances or written tasks that are assessed by your tutor.

What will this course prepare me for?

This is an ideal course to lead onto a degree course in Media Technology/Production. along with other Media based courses. It will prepare you to work independently, using a range of techniques and approaches to gathering information and presenting it. We have seen a number of students gain employment within the film and television industry.

Private Study

You will be given one homework task per week. These homework tasks will be something which requires you to think around the subject you are studying and will further your knowledge accordingly. Sometimes you may have to complete an assignment outside of lesson time which may involve writing or rehearsing practically.

What materials will I need to provide?

You will not need to buy anything apart from a pencil, paper and a pen although a pen drive would be handy to store some of your work.

How will I be taught?

You will be taught multiple units per week by different teachers who have expert skills in the units they are teaching you. The lessons will be mostly practical inspired but some theoretical exploration will be needed depending on the topic being covered.

BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Music Performance is for you if:

You love music, enjoy performing, recording and are creative in your approach. If you enjoy practical work and learning new skills.

BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Music Performance is not for you if:

Are not prepared to try different music styles or perform. We will do our best to encourage and praise you and we are confident that you will make very quick progress with your performing confidence under our specialist guidance if you choose to undertake this course.