GCSE music resources for teachers

Welcome to our virtual education programme, Berkeley Ensemble Online. Designed to assist Key Stage 4 classroom music teachers, it combines a searchable video library with optional bespoke and interactive online live events.

This year, access to the video library is entirely free to all educators and educational establishments across the UK. Just create an account to begin watching.

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About the programme

Pre-recorded content is arranged in four strands, all with a unique chamber music focus.

  • Meet the Ensemble introduces the players and their instruments.
  • Elements of Music demonstrates and discusses key concepts via analyses of our diverse repertoire.
  • Through Time explores aspects of music in more detail, charting their evolution through history.
  • Top Tips distils the ensemble’s 12 years of work in schools into handy, practical advice on practice, performance and composition.

Engaging and eclectic

We have chosen the featured repertoire to be engaging, eclectic and diverse. Spanning ensembles from duo to octet, instruments of the wind, brass, strings and keyboard families are featured. We are proud that at least half of the music in the full programme will be by women or BAME composers.

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Watch for free

All videos from each of the the four strands are available here to watch entirely free. Use these videos within your classrooms and let us know what you think; we would love to hear your feedback!

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About the Berkeley Ensemble

The Berkeley Ensemble was formed by friends in a spirit of adventure. ‘An instinctive collective’ (The Strad), its members have come together from diverse corners of musical life to make music in new ways, reach new audiences and, most importantly, explore new repertoire, be it newly written or inadvertently forgotten.

Away from the concert platform, the Berkeley Ensemble works tirelessly to foster the creation, appreciation and performance of chamber music at every age, level and ability. Residencies and associations with schools allow the ensemble to help create and develop musical communities of lasting and ever-deepening value.  Through Berkeley Ensemble Online, the ensemble hopes to share their 10+ years of experience with schools far and wide. 

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Berkeley Ensemble Online has been made possible through the generous support of a number of trusts, foundations, and individual donors. The Berkeley Ensemble therefore wish to thank: Ambache Charitable Trust (a charity active in raising the profile of women composers), CAVATINA Chamber Music Trust, Dinesh Shamija, Lucille Graham Trust, Music Reprieval Trust, The Radcliffe Trust, Sean Yazbeck, and two anonymous donors.

The ensemble is also incredibly grateful to Ibstock Place School (where the group is Ensemble-in-Residence) for use of space for filming, to Oxford University Press and Resonus Classics for their permission for the use of an extract from Michael Berkeley’s Clarinet Quintet (which appears on the Berkeley Ensemble album Winter Fragments), and to both Schott Music Ltd and Josef Weinberger Ltd for use of extracts from Schoenberg’s String Trio and Dohnyani’s Serenade respectively.

Musical extract from Michael Berkeley’s Clarinet Quintet, which appears on the Berkeley Ensemble album Winter Fragments, featured with permission from Oxford University Press and Resonus Classics. Listen to the full track on Spotify, or purchase the album from Resonus Classics.

Extracts from Schoenberg’s String Trio and Dohnyani’s Serenade featured with kind permission of Schott Music Ltd and Josef Weinberger Ltd.