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Anyone go to Chetham's school in Manchester?

(28 Posts)
Cesario Wed 15-Jul-09 21:38:19

How was it?

bigchris Wed 15-Jul-09 21:39:09

i stayed there once, very swish

Lizzylou Wed 15-Jul-09 21:40:56

A relative of DH's goes.
I used to walk past it every day en route to the Metrolink

It is a lovely building, I think you have to be very musical to get in????

Cesario Wed 15-Jul-09 21:50:15

Yes it is a specialist musicschool

Cesario Wed 15-Jul-09 22:48:09


Cesario Thu 16-Jul-09 08:17:05


forgottenmyoldname Thu 16-Jul-09 22:08:51

Going back a few years but my friends little brother went if that helps. Specialist music school with entry by audition(?s). Private but fee assistance was certainly then the norm (sliding scale). Pupils mostly play two instruments plus everyone was encouraged to sing. Obviously exceptional musical training but good academics too. I think the day was about half music (individual/group/theory plus then timetabled individual practice) and half academics. Loads and loads of in house orchestras/chamber groups/choirs of all sorts and sizes. Lots of in house solo performing opportunities for pupils at all stages. Lots of public performing too but I think that might have been in the later stages. Seemed to do quite a lot with the local professional orchestras. He was very happy there. I would expect the school to welcome informal initial visit/enquiry.

Katisha Thu 16-Jul-09 22:11:29

Why do you ask? Quite a few people at my work went there (work in field of classical music...)

Cesario Thu 16-Jul-09 22:31:43

am thinking of it for two of my children
one already has specialist status at another school but we are thinking of moving to Manchester so this might be a ideal change for him?

CarGirl Thu 16-Jul-09 22:34:23

again my friends younger brother went for 6th form and boarded. He loved it. went on to be in the Scotts Guards after Uni

TEJQ Thu 16-Jul-09 22:36:13

A friend's DD went there, going back a while - she's about 30 now. They are a very ordinary family and most of it was funded by bursary.

Although she only lived 10 miles away she boarded as the music work and practise is intense.

Its not a very big school and its very competitive to get in - a child needs to be exceptionally good.

FAQinglovely Thu 16-Jul-09 22:37:58

as others have said - entry via audtion - don't know if they do at Chethams but at the Specialist Music school I attended we had an initial audtion, then a "3 day stay" - where we attended the school for 3 days, had music lesson, took part in the academic lessons, basically just ran a normal school day for 3 days.

Idea was to see whether we were "right" for the school and whether our standard of playing was due to talent and practice, or just lots and lots of practice (ie the individual music lessons were a crucial part of the decision).

Had a few friends that moved onto Chethams from our school and they did very well.

Cesario Thu 16-Jul-09 22:42:08

faq - thanks really useful smile

Cesario Sun 19-Jul-09 21:31:59


roisin Mon 20-Jul-09 12:44:01

My sil went (years ago) and a good friend from home when I was growing up. Both were pretty much f***d up by the intense pressure there. Obviously to get in they both had to be exceptional, but by the end they were nervous wrecks and psychologically found it very difficult to do any kind of performance. Sil does do some concert work occasionally these days, the other friend does none at all. This was years ago, and it's just two individual cases, so I don't know if it's universally true.

I understand it's not as good academically as some other schools which offer music scholarships and so on.

mumof2222222222222222boys Mon 20-Jul-09 12:58:21

I know someone who teaches there (not music). I think that unless you are seriously good at music it wouldn't be the place to go. Music is prioritised above other subjects.

Cesario Mon 20-Jul-09 14:29:32

Yes I know but I have an older son whose only priority is music and would really benefit from it......

Roisin - how say! DS1 would not go until 6th form so it might be easier I think

policywonk Mon 20-Jul-09 14:35:43

I know several people who went there. Some had a similar experience to roisin's: they were/are very, very talented but have barely touched any conventional instruments since they left. Others I know have gone on to be very successful in musical careers. I guess it's all down to the individual child and how they would cope with the pressure - both the intense pressure to practice (hours a day) and perform, and the other pressures that are common to boarding schools.

I should say, everyone I know who went there seems to have got a good education - they are all clever, articulate types who can place apostrophes wink

FAQinglovely Mon 20-Jul-09 15:01:27

I would say roughtly half of those that I went to music school are no longer in a music related career - some didn't even go to music college or study music at University afterwards.

We were all lucky to get an excellent academic education as well so the fact that half of us don't work in a music related field (although I've been the church organist for nearly 6yrs now! so not sure if I fall into the "not working in music category or not grin).

Those that chose not to pursue their music from the outset, and those that chose not to do it after music college/university mostly have very good jobs - secured because of their academic education.

suwoo Mon 20-Jul-09 15:16:49

My friends DD goes there. She is a self taught violinist and pianist and got in on a scholarship. She is from a deprived area, single parent family and my friend and everyone else are extremely proud of her. You will find her on the front cover of the school brochure wink.

filchthemildmanneredjanitor Mon 20-Jul-09 15:21:58

therr was a docimentary about it a couple of years ago called 'chets' -maybe worth watching. it was a series-maybe done by itv in the north west?

mummydoc Mon 20-Jul-09 16:14:44

they do a sort of advice audition type hting , my dd1 has been , you can go along and do an audition and they give advice about wether you are ready for chets/should consider somehting else, need a different instrument etc. we wewnt with dd1 aged 9 - we knew we wouldn't let her go yet but wanted their advice on various aspects of her musical education IYKWIM. The satff were lovely , very sweet to dd and really helpful . they have open days ( one in autumn i think)

Cesario Tue 21-Jul-09 14:02:49

a pre audition?
Yes I wll take dd and ds along for an open day. and a pre audition.


policywonk Tue 21-Jul-09 14:19:44

FAQ, I should say (my post wasn't clear) that of the people I know who have barely touched an instrument since they left, most are very unhappy about their experience at Chets and wish that they had not gone. They found the pressure overwhelming, and can no longer take pleasure in playing their own instruments (fnaar), although they do all still take a great interest in recorded music. I know that this is a source of sadness and regret to at least three ex-pupils I know.

This isn't to say that it can't be a great school, but it's difficult to predict which children will do well there. From the people I know, I'd say that maybe non-conventional types would struggle there - if you suspect that your son wouldn't get on in basic army training, for example, he might also not get on at Chets.

FAQinglovely Tue 21-Jul-09 14:21:12

hmm @ basic army training.

I would have failed miserably at basic army training without a doubt!

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