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GCSE Music - 12 Ideas For Extra Performance Practice and Experience.

If you read my blog post giving 32 tips to help score high marks in GCSE music solo performance, you will have understood how important it is to get more experience as a performer. Becoming more confident is the best way to be more successful for your GCSE recordings. All of this will be true for A-Level music and any other course where performance forms part of it.

Mic open mic night

Some opportunities have to be provided by your teacher, music department or school but you shouldn't stop there. Get out there and find more opportunities to develop your performing ability, be surrounded by more musicians and grow as a performer.

In school, there should be concerts, class based performances, mock recordings, talent competitions, open evenings and many other ways to get extra practice with performing. But, lets take a look at 12 ideas for performance opportunities outside of school.

1) Join a local music service (or music hub) ensemble (Here is an example of one).

2) Check out local village hall community groups, they often have music clubs.

3) Ask at your local care home if you can go and perform to its residents.

4) Look out for open mic nights at local pubs and bars.

5) Enter battle of the bands competitions.

6) Enter other youth music competitions (Here is an example).

7) Join a National Youth Music organisation (Here is an example).

8) Enquire about performing in a local hospital ward.

9) Look out for fetes, car boots or any events where the organiser might like some live music.

10) Ask in local primary schools if you can go and perform to some students. Your music teacher could help set this up with feeder schools.

11) Join a brass band/wind band or orchestra or form your own band with school mates.

12) Go busking, make a bit of money. (Always check with local authority if it is allowed).


To elaborate a little on the last tip. Please make sure that you are safe. Ideally, select somewhere that has a lot of people around because it will give you a bigger audience but also mean you are safer. Make sure you have minimal equipment and any belongings are kept nearby. Go with friends and not alone or take a family member along just to watch out for you. You could always put up a sign saying all money raised is being donated to your school or to a specific charity, it might generate more audience and will also be a nice gift to the charity.

Christmas time is a great time to do this. Gather a few friends and spend a few hours busking. It is very easy to find music or just sing. Have a few rehearsals in advance and you will be good to go!

Good Luck!

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Thank you for reading.

Mark Glover


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