First String Experience

The Junior Academy First String Experience (FSE) gives children as young as four the best possible start to their musical journey as string players.

Now in its 32nd year, the course encourages basic musical skills, physical ease with the instrument and the enjoyment of playing through group tuition and ensemble playing. The atmosphere is relaxed, friendly and nurturing, to ensure that the children get the most out of their learning.

Parents and guardians support their children by accompanying them to the sessions, helping to sustain their interest and encouraging them to practise.

Each year group gives a concert at the end of every term. There are 30 Saturday sessions over the year. In Year 1 of the programme, students attend a 45-minute pre-instrumental class on a Saturday morning; in Years 2 and 3, this extends to two hours.

Beginners' courses

First Guitar Experience

The Junior Academy First Guitar Experience (FGE) welcomes children aged six to join our three-year programme, which gives them a unique opportunity to learn the guitar with specialist teachers.

Using the Jigsaw Guitar Course devised by FGE director Luke Dunlea, the programme incorporates classical guitar and Kodály method-based training, advancing the children’s basic musicianship skills in areas of pulse, rhythm and pitch. Fun games and singing activities are a key part of the programme, and the lessons develop a solid foundation in Classical guitar technique.

There are 30 Saturday sessions over the year. In Year 1 of the programme, students attend a 45-minute pre-instrumental class on a Saturday afternoon; in Years 2 and 3 this extends to 1 hour 20 minutes.