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School Life


We aim, from your very first day in the RGSHW Music Department, to instil a life-long love for music-making at all levels.  

​Academically, our GCSE and A-Level numbers greatly exceed the national average at the ISM Gold Standard, achieving some of the best exam results out of any state grammar school. A-Level Music students every year have left RGSHW on Oxbridge choral/organ scholarships or entrance to prestigious music/drama conservatoires. 

We have one of the largest school choirs in the region with over 200 students singing every week, alongside a multitude of varying vocal and instrumental ensembles.

Over 250 weekly peripatetic lessons take place with our outstanding team specialist instrumental and vocal tutors, and the school has further financially supported Year 7 students wishing to learn a shortage orchestral instrument on a scholarship scheme.   

​There is an incredibly active musical calendar of events, with two large sold-out November and Spring Showcase concerts, a chamber Autumn Soirée, a traditional Carol Service in the local parish church, whole-school House Music Competition, and a Jazz in the Quad event in the Summer. The students have many opportunities to perform both in and outside of school, as there are annual visits to Oxford University to sing Choral Evensong, music tours to Salzburg thanks to a partnership with an exchange school, and numerous musical collaborations with schools across the country.  

​A highlight of the school year is the musical production, which continues to be hugely successful, welcoming young people from RGS and over ten neighbouring schools to perform in the cast and pit band, alongside the Stage, Sound and Lighting Team (SLST). We work alongside a professional Director and Choreographer, with ‘The Producers’ being performed in 2023. 

​Most of all, there is a strong sense of community within our Music Department. Whether it’s before school, breaktime, lunchtime, or after school, the practice rooms are always buzzing with activity. Indeed, the department has traditionally had a reputation for educating some of the finest nationally-renowned performers, conductors and composers over the past century. We form close links with the Chiltern Music Academy, that run many of their senior ensembles here at RGS. We are also ably assisted by our “RGS Friends of Music” – a parent organisation that helps to financially and logistically support our overall musical output, enabling us to offer opportunities well beyond what most state schools can offer.