Music Performance has been added to My Courses


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Please note:

This seems to be a popular choice! This course is now full for 2024/25 and so you will not be able apply for it as one of your course choices.

However, you can join our waiting list for this course by emailing us at

In the meantime, please apply for an alternative course to go alongside your other choices. If a place becomes available, we will contact you and discuss whether you want to swap to this course back into your programme.  

As course choices change and students shuffle around, it is very unusual for students to remain on waiting lists and not get onto all of their first choice courses by the beginning of term. We will keep you updated!

This course is aimed primarily at students who are interested in developing practical musical skills together with music theory and industry knowledge. It is a highly practical course and is centred on performing, relevant music theory and industry practice.

The BTEC Level 3 Extended Certificate is equivalent to one A-level. The course covers the core aspects of practical music skills, and relevant industry knowledge. Students studying on this programme will have a keen interest in developing their knowledge and skills, and may be intending to pursue a career in the industry. This course attracts UCAS points in the same way as an A-level.

In 2023 BTEC Music Performance student progress was significantly higher than national benchmarks.

Course Content

Students are required to study a range of units over two years. Assessment is a mixture of internal and external.

The following units are currently offered; all are taught across both years:

Ensemble Music Performance

You will learn about good practice and preparation for rehearsal and performance through a series of worksheets, discussions, practical exercises and evaluation.

External Assessment

Practical Music Theory and Harmony

You will learn about relevant music theory through a series of exercises and worksheets. Many of the exercises will be implemented practically.

Internal Assessment

Professional Practice in the Music Industry

You will learn about the music industry through individual research, case studies and worksheets.

External Assessment

Music Performance Session Styles

Sessions Styles involves you learning to perform in a range of different styles, for example Jazz, Punk, Reggae and Soul - as well as learning about the origins and musical influence of each of these genres. This will be through research, discussions, practical exercises, workshops and performances.

Internal Assessment


Instrumental and Vocal Lessons

As performing to a high standard and demonstrating and monitoring technical improvement are such important aspects of the course, it is compulsory that all students take regular 1-1 instrumental/voice lessons.

Lessons are available in College and students should sign up with a peripatetic teacher through their music teacher at the start of the year, or continue with their own lessons outside of college.

The college operates a bursary system that offers financial support for lessons to some students. If the cost of lessons is prohibitive it may also be possible to have them less frequently e.g. once a fortnight rather than once a week.

Resources and Charges

Music performing facilities include:

  • Fully equipped performance theatre space including professional sound and lighting systems
  • Mac suite with high end Mac computers running Logic Pro X, Reaper, MuseScore 4
  • Logic Pro X based digital recording studio incorporating a ‘live’ room and separate control room, complete with significant outboard equipment for effects and processing 
  • An excellent range of industry standard microphones
  • Six practice rooms equipped with pianos and/or PA systems
  • A wide range of band equipment, including amplifiers, drum kits, keyboards and synthesizers
  • We have a wide range of working professionals who provide peripatetic instrument/voice lessons who come into college to support students


A subscription to a basic Spotify account or similar streaming service is highly recommended for access to study playlists for use in the class and at home. There is a charge for instrumental lessons, although funds may be available for those who find the cost of these prohibitive. Students will be expected to provide their own stationery and pay for printing credits. They will also need to provide their own instruments and spares (guitar strings, drum sticks, plectra etc).


All students will be required to attend an audition prior to starting the course.Candidates will be expected to prepare a solo piece on the instrument they intend to use (or voice) during the course.Candidates will receive an invitation to attend audition following receipt of their application.


There will be visits from local HE institutions and regular opportunities to perform outside of college. We are a Bristol Music School and have an established link with the Bristol Beacon, who provide fantastic masterclass, performance and trip opportunities for our students. There will also be ensemble groups running alongside this course for you to participate in.


The BTEC Level 3 Extended Certificate provides a sound basis for students wishing to proceed to higher education courses in Popular/Commercial Music.

It can lead to careers in performing, teaching, and composition as well as related areas in publishing and media.

It combines well with most other subjects but compliments in particular Music Technology, Performing Arts, Business and Media Studies.

Where can this course lead?

Apply for this course

Find out how to apply for BTEC L3 Music Performance.

Music Performance has been added to My Courses