Information about Instruments

Instruments taught at QYMC

This is a list (not quite complete yet) of the instruments that are taught at QYMC, with a brief description of each one. We’ve tried to pick out any special requirements that should be taken into consideration if you are thinking of learning the instrument.

Violin

The violin is the smallest of the stringed instruments offered at QYMC. Although one of the slower instruments to get started on, it is equally suitable for the youngest beginners at QYMC (age six and upwards) and the oldest. Once the basics have been mastered it is a very rewarding instrument to play and we run a junior string ensemble for violin and cello pupils of approximately grade 1 – 3.

The violin is one of the instruments offered in the ITM II class.

Violins suitable for beginners start at about £100, and we have a some violins which can be hired for a modest fee. If we do not have a suitable instrument we can give details of commercial hire schemes.

‘Cello

The ‘cello is a large stringed instrument, played in a sitting position with the instrument between the legs. It is tuned several octaves lower than the violin, and there are many similarities between the two. The cello is a very mellow instrument and is suitable for beginners of all ages at QYMC.

The ‘cello is one of the instruments offered in our ITM II class.

‘Cellos suitable for beginners start at about £150, (second hand) and we have a some ‘cellos which can be hired for a modest fee. If we do not have a suitable instrument we can give details of commercial hire schemes.

Piano

Piano is one of the most versatile and useful instruments to be able to play, however we do NOT recommend it as a first instrument as it is not suited to playing with others. The piano is a member of the percussion family, and combines melody, harmony and accompaniment on one instrument, making it equally suited to solo or ensemble playing. Piano lessons are only available to existing QYMC pupils once they reach grade 3 on their main instrument. We do not offer piano lessons for children not already at QYMC.

Trumpet/Cornet

This is one of the most popular instruments of the brass family. Usually used as a melody instrument, it is equally well suited to playing jazz, pop or classical music. Most beginners start on the Cornet – a smaller version of the Trumpet

A starter level cornet will cost about £140. There are good value instrument hire schemes offered by music shops, which are excellent for beginners.

Jflute

The Jflute is a smaller, lighter flute designed for smaller players. It is a great starter instrument as it is ideal for younger children (age 6-7). Once children are a little bigger they move up the standard flute. Flutes are melody instruments.

jFlutes cost around £100 and come in groovy colours!

Clarineo

The Clarineo is a smaller, lighter clarinet designed for smaller players. It is a great starter instrument as it is ideal for younger children (age 7-8). Once children are a little bigger they move up the standard clarinet. Clarinets are melody instruments.

Clarineos cost around £110 and come in groovy colours!

Percussion

Percussion is ideal for younger beginners. Untuned percussion instruments (for example drums) are fun to play, and allow children to develop a good sense of rhythm and group awareness when playing: these are two of the most important skills in music. Tuned percussion (for example the xylophone) is also excellent for developing skills in melody and harmony.

Percussion covers many instruments, and it is unnecessary for pupils to buy or hire all the instruments they encounter. More usually we would suggest that pupils buy a rubber practice pad and set of sticks, which should cost under £20.

Recorder

The recorder is a member of the woodwind family, and is one of the most popular instruments for beginners. Recorder is always a popular class at QYMC and it is a good instrument for ensemble playing.  QYMC encourages pupils to play the full family of recorders.

The recorder is one of the instruments offered in our ITM II class.

Recorders are popular instruments and descant recorders are available very cheaply. Although you often find recorders for sale in toy departments, etc. you should go to a music shop and pay about £8 – £15 for a plastic descant as there is an enormous difference in quality in these instruments. A more advanced recorder student should look at paying £100 upwards for a handmade wooden recorder.

Any information given regarding prices of instruments is offered as a guide only. In order to learn an instrument you will from time to time need to buy for example tutor books, sheet music and consumables. Your child’s teacher will advise you of what you need to purchase or make the purchases on your behalf if this is more appropriate.