Eleanor Vickers, PGCE Trumpet

What was musical background before starting at the RNCM?

I spent my time in the school ensembles as well as being an active member of my local music service, going on tours and taking part in concerts around the UK. I completed an undergraduate degree from 2013-2017 at Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance, London.

Why did you decide to study the Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE)?

I’ve always wanted to do something in music since I began trumpet lessons at the age of 7. My decision to complete a PGCE was quite a late one – it was at the start of my fourth year at Trinity Laban that I realised I didn’t want to continue a Postgraduate performance course. The PGCE route became clear as I had just spent that summer working alongside other training music teachers and staff at an International Music Summer School. My role was both pastoral and assisting the kids musically, playing alongside them in orchestra rehearsals and concerts. I really enjoyed the job and it made me realise that I wanted to continue working with kids and guiding and inspiring them in their music making.

Who would you recommend the PGCE for?

You have to be sure it’s what you want to do. The PGCE was a great year for me and I really enjoyed it, however it is busy. As long as you can manage paperwork you will have a really fun and fulfilling year. This course is for someone who wants to gain the knowledge and experience of music in school settings and apply it to the more practical music teaching that is completed through the music service placement.

What are some of your highlights from the RNCM?

The lecturers and support I received has been brilliant. Whilst training and completing my PGCE, I was also given the opportunity to continue having trumpet lessons with an RNCM tutor. This extra support and opportunity gave me the chance to continue my own musicianship and improve my own playing. I was also given guidance on teaching those at conservatoire level or high level playing; something that wasn’t necessarily present in the placements I was on.

What’s your favourite type of music?

This question is always a hard one to answer. It really does depend on my mood. In the car Classic FM and background music is always on, however some of my Spotify playlists are more eclectic including pop music from the 60s to modern day music. I feel that going forward as a music teacher, knowing the present approaches and views of music is a good thing, as I can then relate to my students more and possibly adapt music they are learning to enthuse them more.

What are your future plans?

To keep developing my teaching. I have just started work with Redbridge Music Service and hope to continue working in music education and alongside other influential music teachers for many years to come. I will also try to maintain and develop my trumpet playing in ensembles.