Contemporary Band Programme
The Contemporary Band Programme offers the environment and time to create, develop and achieve excellence in performing contemporary music.
Young artists can collaboratively create original music. Students naturally explore sound and rhythm within the context of their social culture to create original songs. These can be used for NCEA assessment and, ultimately, generate personal revenue. Bands and individual artists perform their latest works at the end of each term.
One or more practices are scheduled every Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday between 8am and 9pm. Fridays are ‘Demo Recording Day’, when bands can record and start the pre-production process.
Jazz and Big Band Programme
Our Big Band is a jazz ensemble comprising brass, saxophones and rhythm sections – specifically, trumpets, trombones, saxophones, guitar, bass, drums, keyboard and a vocalist. Members audition each year, with about 20 members from Year 9 to Year 13. Claire Oliver leads the band, along with teaching saxophone at College.
The band plays at school functions and in public, including the Christchurch Big Band Festival, and enters the Ara JazzQuest Competition. Among the highlights is the Southern Jam Youth Jazz Festival, held in Blenheim each August, with bands competing and also performing in local venues, along with enjoying a Masterclass session. Christ’s College regularly receives a Gold award and has also won the overall Festival Winner award. College Band members are often selected for the All-Star Band, recognising the best players.
In addition, several students are selected for a Jazz Combo, where they can play more improvised charts.
Instrumentalists can collaborate and develop their repertoire to a professional performance level.
Ensembles are arranged to suit ability levels, with all groups encouraged to enter the annual Chamber Music national schools competition in June. Rehearsals fit in with student schedules and are both staff and student directed. Ensembles perform at College concerts and local and community charity events.
Christ’s College Sedley Wells Music Competition
Our annual Christ’s College Sedley Wells Music Competition provides a wonderful opportunity for our instrumentalists and singers to perform solo items in a formal setting.
The competition is divided into two categories – Junior (Years 9–10) and Senior (Years 11–13) – and features an impressive range of musical styles and instruments.
Director of Music: Robert Aburn