Assistant Director of Music, Perth and Kinross

Closing date:

Glenalmond CollegePerth and Kinross

Date posted:
Start date: September 2019
Contract type: Full Time
Salary: Competitive Salary
Contract term: Maternity Cover

The Position

Glenalmond College is seeking to appoint an Assistant Director of Music for September 2019 to cover a maternity leave, initially until Half Term (late May) of the Trinity Term 2020, and possibly for longer.  We are looking to appoint an inspirational musician, of academic excellence and with proven communication skills, to work as Assistant to the Director of Music in the day-to-day running of the Music Department.  We are looking to fill a full time position but, for the correct applicant, we may consider a part time position.

Music has a high profile at Glenalmond and, given the environment, there has always been a strong leaning towards the arts at the College.

The College

Founded in 1847 by William Gladstone and others, Glenalmond College is a fully co-educational boarding and day school, set in the stunning Perthshire countryside and enjoying magnificent grounds of over 300 acres in an unrivalled setting at the foot of the Grampian hills.  There are currently around 400 pupils at Glenalmond between the ages of 12 and 18.  The principal point of entry is at 13 but we have a small Second Form group which is geared towards those transferring at 12 from the Scottish primary system. There are presently four boys' boarding houses, three girls' houses and one house for second and third form boys. 

The School has excellent academic and extra-mural facilities.  In addition to cricket, rugby and lacrosse pitches, there are tennis courts, squash courts, a grass athletics track, a nine-hole golf course, a swimming pool, a sports hall and an all-weather playing surface.   The Robin Thomson Theatre building is the venue for our drama and musical productions.  The School has a strong CCF contingent, an outstanding Duke of Edinburgh's Award Scheme and a Community Service programme which operates locally on a regular basis.

The majority of full time teaching staff and some non-teaching staff along with their families live on campus in accommodation provided by the College.  There is very much a community feel amongst the staff who live on campus with many interacting with each other on a personal as well as a professional basis.

The Music Department

Staff & Instrumental Teaching

The full time music staff, Dr Tim Ridley (Director of Music), Brian Elrick (Head of Pipes & Drums) and the Assistant Director of Music all have their own offices in the Music School.  Around 20 visiting music teachers come to Glenalmond each week, with most staff travelling up from Edinburgh or Glasgow.  The immediate administration of their work, and the timetabling of individual pupil lessons, is dealt with by Mrs Anne Dillon, the Music School Administrator, who works Monday to Friday in the Music School General Office.


The department is housed in a purpose-built building of 1963, designed by Basil Spence and recently acquiring listed building status. There is a recital hall, 8 practice/teaching rooms, offices and a Music Technology studio with a separate recording facility.  

Concerts, Recitals & Masterclasses

Informal weekly lunchtime concerts are given on Thursdays throughout the year.  The large ensembles and the chamber groups perform in the Autumn Concert in November and in either the Spring Concert or Gala Concert in March.  The Gala Concert is an annual concert given in the magnificent surroundings of Perth Concert Hall, the programme varying in recent years from Choral Society performing Orff’s Carmina Burana, to a full orchestra accompanied, staged performance of Jesus Christ Superstar, to last year’s six concerto/concert arias all performed by music scholars.  This year’s concert will include a complete performance of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s virtuosic Variations for cello and rock band.


The Chapel plays an important role in the life of the community. There is a daily Chapel Service on weekdays as well as a Sunday Service for the boarders. The Director of Music leads the whole School for hymn singing (Congregational Practice) on Fridays. The Chapel Choir currently numbers 46 and sings an anthem or setting each Sunday.

Music Technology

Considerable investment has been made in Music Technology.  Facilities presently comprise 10 iMac computers, running Sibelius 7 and Logic Pro software.


There is a stock of College orchestral instruments though pupils are encouraged to acquire their own as soon as possible. There are a new Yamaha C7X grand piano and a Roland digital harpsichord in the recital hall and there are Welmar upright pianos (purchased in 1998) in the practice rooms.


Music Scholarships are offered for entry in all years and range from remission of fees plus free instrumental tuition to Exhibitions of free instrumental tuition only. We have good connections with preparatory and local primary schools and past and present pupils at Glenalmond include former choristers of St John's College, Cambridge, Bristol Cathedral, St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral, Edinburgh, Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral and Guildford Cathedral.  Glenalmond Music Scholars currently hold positions in the National Youth Orchestra of Scotland, Perth Youth Orchestra, Edinburgh Youth Orchestra and the National Youth Choirs of both Scotland and Great Britain, in addition to the National Youth Jazz Orchestra of Scotland.  There are several ex-scholars reading music at various universities around the UK.  One of our current Upper Sixth Music Scholars holds a conditional offer for the September 2019 organ scholarship at St Catherine’s College, Cambridge.

Academic Teaching

In years 8 & 9 (Second & Third Form) all pupils receive one period of music weekly: thereafter Music is available at GCSE (Edexcel), and A-level as a Sixth Form study.  Depending on pupil requirement, either Higher Music or Higher Music Technology is also offered as a Sixth Form option.

Personal and Professional Qualities Sought for this position

The precise responsibilities of the position are focused around the delivery of academic music, in particular A-level, and the coaching of three large ensembles. 

  • Teach an academic timetable up to and including A Level and Higher (GTCS Registration required) and provide a lively and stimulating classroom environment that pushes all pupils to achieve their full potential.
  •  Directing String Orchestra, Concert Band and Cantores (Second/Third Form Choir).
  • Assisting with administrative and routine tasks as requested by the Director of Music.
  • An in-depth understanding of life in a busy Boarding School.
  • Demonstrable experience of working as part of a team.
  • Demonstrable experience of pastoral care provision.
  • Ability to work well (without line management supervision) with others internal and external to the organisation.
  • Ability to represent the school to parents and external agencies and professional bodies.
  • Ability to work unsupervised.
  • IT literate and competent in use of databases, Microsoft Office, GSuite etc
  • Excellent planning, organisation, written and verbal skills are essential.
  • Engage fully in continuous professional development.
  • Undertake other duties, i.e.  supervised study and cover, take a tutor group, carry out boarding duties one evening per week and on occasion take a saturday night duty to cover an activity.
  • Contribute to the extra-curricular life of the school.


Additional responsibilities might include some, but not necessarily all, of the following, depending on individual strengths (please note that organ or advanced piano ability is not a prerequisite for the post):

  • Instrumental/theory/aural teaching
  • Coaching chamber music groups
  • Playing the organ in Chapel and accompanying Chapel Choir
  • Accompanying pupils in concerts and for examinations


The College has its own pay scale and accommodation may be available as part of the role. We can offer you a competitive salary, complimentary refreshments during hours of work, a good working environment as part of a close-knit team and the possibility of opportunities for the role to grow. 

Applications for the post

All applications must be made on the College Application Form.  Please also include a covering letter outlining your suitability for this position.

Please return completed applications (marked Private & Confidential) to: The HR Manager,

For further details regarding the musical requirements of the post, or for an informal chat, please contact the Director of Music, Tim Ridley, or telephone 01738 842138.

Closing date for this post is Friday 15th March. Interviews are scheduled from week commencing Monday 18th March, although the College reserves the right to interview and appoint at any time in the recruitment process.

Job location

More about Glenalmond College
Type: Mainstream School
Phase: Secondary
Funding status: Independent
Gender: Mixed
Age Range: 12 - 18 years
Denomination: Episcopalian
Address: Glenalmond, Perth, Perthshire, PH1 3RY, United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 1738 842056
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