SMS provides high quality music tuition both privately and in schools across Sussex. We believe:
1) that music is a universal language through which all of us are able to express ourselves
2) music-making should always be creative and that all children have a right to a good quality music education.
Whether it be in school or privately, with Sussex Music School, students explore music of different genres, styles and traditions, playing to their strengths and preferences, as they build on their abilities as musical performers. They regularly improvise and compose during lessons, ensuring that music making is enjoyable and relevant.
Learners of all ages and abilities gain confidence, communication skills and well-being through the timeless activity of making music.
At SMS we believe in developing our music workforce, enabling them to use up-to-date teaching methods and fully understand the needs of each learner. To this end our professional teachers receive ongoing training, monitoring and support from our senior team. Only the best teachers in the field locally are accredited to SMS. Valuing our teachers is paramount as this will translate into the best musical experiences for our students.
SMS is directed by Alexandra Dalton, who has a wealth of experience as a music educator. Originally trained as a classical violinist and pianist, after a music degree Alex studied violin and teaching at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester. Alex’s playing career ranges from orchestral work to her gypsy jazz swing band. She has taught violin, piano and curriculum music to children aged between 4-19 for 18 years and has also worked with London Ballet schools, Birmingham Conservetoire, Northampton University Drama department, the Yehudi Menuhin School and postgraduate students in Berkshire and Sussex amongst others.
After training in Dalcroze Eurhythmics (music through movement) in Geneva, Alex delivered workshops at the NAME National conference for two consecutive years (now MusicMark). She has supported numerous music services in the sphere of music and movement and creative music teaching for many years, becoming well known as a workshop and INSET leader across the country. She was South East trainer for the Trinity/OU CPD course for KS2 music and was recently seconded to work for CHARANGA in developing their innovative online music teaching materials and applications.
Alex worked as lead advisory teacher and consultant in Primary Music for East Sussex Music Service for 10 years during which time she developed the Hub’s Singing strategy and was at the forefront of the First Access (whole class instrumental) project. She provided Curriculum support and training for 150 local schools and designed and ran music programs for younger children in music centres and nurseries.
During the last year Alex has worked with charity ‘Creative Futures’ in conjunction with the Institute of Education to run a project to research the benefits of arts provision on disadvantaged children. She wrote the materials, trained teachers from London, Coventry and Essex and delivered part of the project. For SMS, Alex is currently Director of Music at the Aurora Academies and The Gatwick School. She is also regional CPD and training manager for Charanga. Alex has two small children and enjoys mountain walking and climbing.