Music and Performing Arts
St Andrew’s Cathedral School has long been a leader within the independent school sector in performing arts. From our beginnings in 1885 as a choir school, we have a proud history of music education. Music is central to the life of our school. While the Cathedral Choir has a reputation for developing quality vocalists, the school has also played a major role in the development of professional concert musicians and actors.
We offer state-of-the-art classrooms and specialist instrumental teaching areas, practice rooms for ensemble rehearsals and individual lessons as well as dedicated drama and performance spaces and a Black Box Theatre. The dedicated Fairfax Music Room and Chapter House are other impressive performance spaces utilised by students.
Our city location also opens up a world of performance possibilities in world class venues. This ranges from performances in the beautiful surrounds of St Andrew’s Cathedral or Sydney Town Hall, professional quality productions at City Recital Hall Angel Place, the Concourse Theatre, or NIDA Parade Theatre and recitals in our newly renovated Chapter House, or carols in the Queen Victoria Building.
Our focus is on bringing our students into a community bound to excellence. We know the importance of strong relationships – the support of a devoted and expert mentor is essential in any successful music program – and our teachers and tutors have the perfect balance of outstanding educational qualifications as well as professional experience as performers.
Our teaching team across performing arts draws upon professional performance careers, technical knowledge of performing arts, and backgrounds in a range of subject specific specialisations, such as conducting, instrumental and vocal pedagogy, ethnomusicology, improvisation, theatre production and musical theatre.
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Our focus on character and the holistic development of students means we offer a wide variety of sports and sporting competitions throughout the year. Students of all sporting abilities are welcome and encouraged to strive for excellence. We want all participants, across all ability levels, to develop and improve their sporting skills and sport specific fitness.
Our secondary school is a member of the Independent Sporting Association for inter-school competitions and the Winter Sport Program is compulsory for all students in Years 7 to 11.
We are very supportive of students who excel in a sport not offered as part of the St Andrew’s sports program. Students can apply to be supported to pursue pathways to school, regional, state and national representation in these other sports.
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Specialist development coaches
We employ highly skilled coaching staff, many of whom have had distinguished sporting careers themselves. We have specialist development coaches in football, fencing, basketball, hockey, netball and rugby.
Our head coaches are supported by a talented pool of staff, many of whom are highly trained in coaching or have performed at the highest level of sport.
Our Athlete and Team Development Manager oversees the individual and team skill and strength development of all students at the school, working closely with our highly experienced strength and conditioning coaches, PDHPE staff, coaching staff and our students, to develop training programs and drills that will improve health and performance.
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The Outdoor Education program at St Andrew’s Cathedral School is one of the largest and most comprehensive of any school in NSW. The school has its own Outdoor Education Department and owns an Outdoor Education centre called Kirrikee, in the Southern Highlands.
Unlike most schools, we do not outsource outdoor education to professional providers. Rather we have our own permanent and highly skilled outdoor educators who run a consecutive and longitudinal program, where each year builds on skills attained in previous years and where the same staff work with students and their personal growth, often over a decade.
The school’s outdoor education program is physically and mentally challenging, focused on building community and character, particularly persistence, self-control, resilience and courage. Camp is a great opportunity to discover more about ourselves, others, and the wonders of creation.
The sequential program runs from Kindergarten through to Year 10, culminating in students being offered a variety of trips including a range of hikes in NSW and beyond, mountain biking, sea kayaking and a 20-day “Kosi-to-Coast” expedition from Mt Kosciuszko to Bass Strait.
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Whether it’s on the sporting field, in music and performing arts, debating and public speaking, overseas tours or our many clubs, our teaching and learning doesn’t end in the classroom. Our extensive co-curricular program challenges and stretches our students to follow their passions and develop both expertise and character.
There are more than 25 music and drama ensembles at the school, along with an impressive variety of sporting opportunities and a comprehensive outdoor education program, based at the school's rural Southern Highlands property. Each year, the school offers a number of international tours, providing educational opportunities in sport, community service, music, drama, languages, history, science or art.
Our focus is on bringing students into a community bound to excellence. We know the importance of strong relationships, and our teachers, coaches and tutors work alongside our students as skilled and supportive mentors. Co-curricular activities also build character, teaching our students courage, self-control and persistence: how to compromise, how to negotiate, how to work in a team, how to lead, how to problem solve, as well as how to win with humility or lose with dignity. This sort of grit and resilience is essential both in and out of the classroom, and for life itself.
Our House competitions and activities also play a major role in the pastoral and co-curricular life of students at the school. Whether it be the Bake Off cupcake competition to raise money for charity, the Athletics Carnival or the debating competition, fun is an essential element in the diverse number of House activities offered throughout the year.
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