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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Performance, Keyboard Skills, Choir
Module Code MC403
School 59
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Roisin Blunnie
Semester 2: Roisin Blunnie
Autumn: Roisin Blunnie
Module TeachersRoisin Blunnie
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Coursework Only
Coursework is reassessed during the Autumn resit period

This module aims to provide an opportunity for students to develop advanced practical skills and critical disciplinary understanding in individual and ensemble music performance, through engagement in choral conducting, choral singing, advanced aural and keyboard skills, and instrumental/vocal studies. Students may choose their areas of specialism in this final-year module, selecting to undertake two of the following three assessments: Individual instrumental/vocal recital (with reflective commentary), musicianship portfolio (with reflective commentary), choral conducting recital (with annotated conductor’s scores). Through small-group teaching, students will have the opportunity to gain experience in conducting the vocal ensemble made up of their peers, with supportive guidance from staff who are themselves professional conductors, and to progress incrementally in advanced musicianship studies. The module will also include discussion about lifelong learning in music and music-teaching, including guidance on support organisations and opportunities for continuing professional development and further study.

Learning Outcomes

1. Understand and utilise advanced practical and theoretical concepts in the areas of keyboard playing and musicianship.
2. Draw on musical skills and stylistic knowledge suitable to final year, in the areas of instrumental/vocal performance, and to critically evaluate musical performance activities based on these attributes.
3. Demonstrate advanced choral performance skills and bring these to bear on future professional activities both as a participant and a leader.
4. Lead a choral ensemble in a school context and/or in society more broadly, and engage in relevant score analysis and notation-based preparation activities in the role of conductor.
5. Use interpersonal, organisational, and leadership skills appropriate to group music rehearsal and performance.

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Seminars8Small-group musicianship classes
Workshop8Choral Conducting
Directed learning5Individual instrumental/vocal studies
Lecture20Choral Rehearsal and Performance
Independent Study84Individual practice and research
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Advanced Musicianship Studies
Polyphonic performance exercises derived from repertoire of the Renaissance, Baroque, Romantic, 20th-century, and contemporary eras and including popular music/film music/world musics by diverse musical artists and composers, including examples suitable for future use in the teaching context.

Choral Conducting
Advanced choral conducting technique using homophonic and polyphonic pieces selected from Renaissance, Classical, Romantic and contemporary repertoire, of a style suited to the vocal ensemble made up of the module’s participants; score study and analytical annotation, advanced choral sight-reading and harmonic awareness. Outline of CPD courses such as Sing Ireland International Choral Conducting Summer School; Irish Youth Choir Easter and Summer Initiatives, Kodály Society of Ireland Summer Course, DCU Choral Leadership Day, Post-Primary Music Teachers Association workshops and conferences, and options for further study in choral leadership.

Choral Singing
Participation in the DCU Lumen Chorale, a large choir of soprano, alto, tenor and bass voices made up of all the students of the Bachelor of Religious Education and Music programme. Repertoire is drawn from styles such as Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, music of the 19th and 20th centuries, contemporary music, arrangements of popular music and film music, rounds/canons and improvisation. Activities include choral-vocal training, choral warm-ups, ensemble singing appropriate to diverse musical styles, group sight-singing and musicianship, rehearsal technique, choral pedagogy and leadership, guidance and repertoire for leading school choirs, and performance in concerts, university events, and competitions.

Individual Instrumental/Vocal Music
Students take individual lessons in their chosen instrument(s), guided by specialist tutors. Lessons focus on technique, musical style and expression, performance strategies, and music literacy appropriate to the instrument and to the final year of the programme.

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Performance evaluationChoose one of: Individual instrumental/vocal recital (with reflective commentary, written); Advanced musicianship portfolio (with reflective commentary, audio); Choral Conducting recital (with annotated conductor’s scores)50%Sem 1 End
Performance evaluationChoose another of: Individual instrumental/vocal recital (with reflective commentary, written); Advanced musicianship portfolio (with reflective commentary, audio); Choral Conducting recital (with annotated conductor’s scores)50%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

  • Frank Abrahams, Paul D Head: 2020, The Oxford Handbook of Choral Pedagogy, Oxford University Press, 9780197528884
  • Edward Bolkovac and Judith Johnson: 2004, 150 Rounds for Singing and Teaching, Boosey & Hawkes, 9781458411426
  • John Butt: 2009, Playing with History: The Historical Approach to Musical Performance, Cambridge University Press, 9780511613555
  • Martin Clayton, Byron Dueck, Laura Leante: 2013, Experience and Meaning in Music Performance, Oxford University Press, 9780199811328
  • Nicholas Cook: 2013, Beyond the Score: Music As Performance, Oxford University Press, 9780199357406
  • Tone Bianca Dahl: 2008, The Choir: Singing, Leading, Communicating, Cantando, 9788292494226
  • André de Quadros: 2012, The Cambridge Companion to Choral Music, Cambridge University Press, 9780521128957
  • Colin Durrant: 2017, Choral Conducting: Philosophy and Practice, 2nd edn, Routledge, 9781138682061
  • Shirlee Emmons, Constance Chase: 2006, Prescriptions for Choral Excellence: Tone, Text, Dynamic Leadership, Oxford University Press, 9780195182422
  • Dorottya Fabian, Renee Timmers, Emery Schubert: 2014, Expressiveness in Music Performance: Empirical approaches across styles and cultures, Oxford University Press, 9780199659647
  • Ursula Geisler, Karin Johansson: 2014, Choral Singing, Cambridge Scholars, 9781443863315
  • King's Singers: 2002, The King's Singers Book of Rounds, Canons and Partsongs, Hal Leonard, 9780634046308
  • Antal Molnar: 2003, Classical Canons - 230 Solfeggio, Editio Musica Budapest, 9781458413253
  • John Rink: 2002, Musical Performance: A Guide to Understanding, Cambridge University Press, 0521788625
  • Richard Schechner: 2020, Performance Studies: An Introduction, 4th edn, Routledge, 9781138284562
  • Dennis Shrock,Dennis Shrock: 2022, Choral Repertoire, 2nd edn, Oxford University Press, 9780197622407
  • Graham F. Welch, David Martin Howard, John Nix: 2019, The Oxford Handbook of Singing, Oxford University Press, 9780199660773
  • David Willcocks, John Rutter: 1987, 100 Carols for Choirs, Oxford University Press, 9780193532274
Other Resources

51241, Website, TEORIA, 0, Interactive Ear-Training Exercises: Intervals, Chords, Dictation, www.teoria.com, 51242, Multimedia Resources, Module Lecturers, 0, Tailored Resources,
Programme or List of Programmes
BREDMBachelor of Religious Education & Music
BRMBachelor of Religious Education & Music

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