Classes and Lessons
Specialized Skills Training
The various specialized practical skills for composition, piano, strings, percussion and traditional Japanese music obviously take an important position within MHS, as we are focused on early specialized music education. For one hour each week, private advanced content lessons are conducted by practical skill instructors for each field. Instructors are primarily concurrently employed by the Tokyo University of the Arts, and consideration is given to education consistent with that of the university.
In June of each year, the Public Practical Skill Examinations for third year students are held. Here the results of this specialized practical skill education take center stage, and are presented to the school and to the public.
Vocal Music Secondary Specialization/Piano Secondary Specialization/Percussion Secondary Specialization
Piano Specialization Students are required to take Vocal Music as a Secondary Specialization, and students specializing in Western music outside of piano and required to take piano as a secondary specialization. Students specializing in Traditional Japanese Music may request a secondary specialization in piano. Students may by request additionally take a secondary specialization in either Vocal Music or Percussion as an elective over the course of two years beginning in their second year.
Orchestra/Chamber Music/Chorus/Piano Sight Reading Ensemble
Composition, Piano, and Traditional Japanese Music Specialization students at MHS take Chorus classes for two to three hours a week, while String Instrument, Wind Instrument and Percussion Specialization students take orchestra classes. In this manner, we conduct classes divided for each specialization.
In these classes the program for the Regular Concert held each fall and the musical pieces for the Entrance Ceremony and Graduation Ceremony are the pieces practiced. Performance pieces cover a wide variety of music from classical to modern. Among these, a piece for the chorus and orchestra is selected and performed by all of the students in the school at the Regular Concert. The Traditional Japanese Music is also included, providing an excellent chance for students to present the results of their daily studies.
In addition there are separate Chamber Music Classes for String Instruments, Wind Instruments, Percussion, and Traditional Japanese Music, as well as double piano, four hand and other ensemble and sight reading classes for Composition and Piano Specialization students, and musical grammar classes for Traditional Japanese Music Specialization students.
Participation in the Tokyo University of the Arts Wind and Percussion Chamber Music Class
In 2013 through the good will of the Tokyo University of the Arts Wind and Percussion Section, MHS woodwind students outside of flute students became able to participate in Faculty first year Wood and Brass Concert and Percussion Concert classes.
This realized a truly groundbreaking situation in which high school students may participate in classes for university students.
In concrete terms, MHS brass students participate in the university Brass Concert class held on Mondays during 3rd period (13:00-14:30), and all MHS wind students (except flute) participate in the university Wind and Percussion Concert Class held on Mondays during 4th period (14:40-16:10).
Attendance and participation in these university classes is recognized for credit as Chamber Music Classes of the MHS.
Music-related courses outside of the Practical Skill Courses include History of Music, Music Theory, Performance Method, Solfège and others. In the History of Music students learn their programs, the historical background of the composers, and their positions within the history of music. In Music Theory, programs used in Regular Concerts and other concerts are used as educational materials. Students learn how the pieces formed and structured, as well as perform analyses of the vocal and other sections. Traditional Japanese Music Specialization students study the History of Japanese Music, and Japanese Music Theory. The role of this course is to tie together performance method theory with actual performance, and as such students learn melodics, prosodics, phrasing, articulation, rhythm and other considerations. In solfège students learn the fundamentals of music in all areas including sight singing, rhythm, sight reading, and music dictation. The goal is to a form of solfège can be utilized in Specialized Skills Training.
In this manner, a major aim of music education at the MHS is to deepen students’ study of music in a diversified manner, and for them to utilize a comprehensive knowledge of the musical composition in its actual performance.
The MHS aims to nurture humanistic and engaging musicians with a wide range of refinements and insights; musicians who do not exclusively lean toward their areas of specialization. For that reason, the MHS has organized an educational curriculum that allows for wide-ranging and comprehensive study in general subjects as well.
Many students attending the MHS live alone apart from their parents. Instructors in charge of protective care look after these and other students, offering them mental and physical assistance.