Composition & Songwriting at CYM

Many young musicians create their own music and CYM has always provided opportunities for students to express themselves through writing in a variety of styles.

Contemporary Classical Music

From September 2017 CYM is launching a composition pathway for its student composers. CYM students will be able to study composition as a first or second study, similarly to instrumental studies. The new composition department offers group and private lessons, in which young composers will learn techniques, discover new music and develop their independent understanding of how music comes together. With practicality in mind, student composers will write at least two chamber compositions, which will be performed and recorded at CYM and be used to start their composer portfolio. In preparation for the concerts, they will gain valuable experience in creating professional looking scores, writing for various orchestral instruments and working closely with the performing musicians.

Following a visit from Judith Weir CYM went on to be mentioned in her blog post: Judith Weir Blog Post


The Songwriting classes offer in-depth theoretical analyses of song styles from the Classical era to Jazz and present-day Popular styles, and practical exercises implementing a range of compositional techniques that enable students to develop their original voice in any style of their choosing. Special attention is given to the relationships between:

  • Music and language
  • Melodic and harmonic movement
  • Chord cells
  • Phrase structure and form
  • Rhythm and style

which we study through group improvisation, learning and performing repertoire, and individual tutorial sessions. Students also have the opportunity to co-write, accompany, and arrange for one another.

To attend the classes students must be:

  • Year 9 and upward
  • Approximately Grade 5
  • Be actively engaged in composing and/or performing their own¬†instrumental music, songs, and/or lyrics.

Composers, creative writers, and lyricists welcome.