HBHS aims to give students access to a wide range of cultural activities and sports alongside a quality academic education.

The Music Department is a critical part of the school’s culture, providing musical development to the students through weekly lessons, music classes, group rehearsal and assembly singing. Each year a School Prefect assumes responsibility for the promotion of music and performing arts in the school, and also helps staff with the organisation of events within the Music Department.

HBHS has a large music department which employs three classroom teachers and eight itinerant music teachers. Free lessons are available to students, and presently many are taking up the opportunity to learn Wind, Brass, Guitar, Bass, Bagpipes, Strings, Voice and Percussion. Groups in the Music Department that offer performance opportunities include a Jazz Band, School Orchestra, Pipe Band, several small chamber groups, the Gypsy Pickers (Latin and Flamenco Guitar), Barbershop Quartet, Choir and a large number of rock bands which compete in the Rock Quest. 

The Music Department has, for the past two decades, organised an international music tour once every two years, visiting countries including Vanuatu, Noumea, Fiji, Samoa, Australia, Rarotonga, New Caledonia and
Hawaii. Each year the school performs a week-long production with Hamilton Girls’ High School, the responsibility for the production and the hosting of the production alternates yearly between the schools. The most recent productions run by HBHS have been Jesus Christ Superstar, Dracula and War of the Worlds.

HBHS is fortunate to have performance workshops with specialist visiting
lecturers and clinicians, allowing students to further develop their skills under the tutelage of experienced and renowned local and international musicians.

Itinerant Music Lessons

HBHS offers music lessons on a wide range of instruments through the expert tuition of our highly skilled and experienced itinerant music teachers. Lessons are provided during class time on a rotating roster system, ensuring students don’t miss the same subject more than twice in a term. Lessons are provided free of charge through the itinerant music scheme on all instruments, excluding piano. Piano lessons are provided privately outside of school hours. Commitment to practice at home in between lessons is a requirement of tuition and is essential for progress.  Students involved in the itinerant programme are expected to be part of a co-curricular music group once they are at a suitable level.

  • Mrs M Eade – Bagpipes
  • Mrs S Stephens – Strings
  • Mr R Wilson – Guitar
  • Ms J Ruck Nu’u – Singing
  • Mr C Hudson – Bass
  • Mr T Dent – Percussion
  • Mr  N Koretz – Woodwind
  • Mr  P Norman – Brass
  • Mr P Bos – Piano

Whole School Assembly Singing

Our whole school focuses on singing in weekly assemblies and prepares for House Competitions in both traditional and modern song. Songs are drawn from a wide range of sources including traditional, cultural and popular.

Jazz Band

The Jazz Band practises weekly, with a wide range of students and instruments involved. The Jazz Band plays for the school at assemblies, open day, and school prize giving. The group also goes on tour every second year in order to represent HBHS and to give students an opportunity to see new sights (and cultures) and to expand their musical talents.


The HGHS/HBHS School Orchestra involves around 35 students. The Orchestra practises regularly with a wide range of students, talents and instruments involved. Some of the instruments include trumpets, trombones, clarinets, violin, viola, cello, drums, percussion, bass and piano. The Orchestra plays for the school at special assemblies, open day, and school prize-giving among other occasions.

The Gypsy Pickers

The Gypsy Pickers is the school Guitar Ensemble, with a Latin flamenco flavour. They have toured extensively throughout the Pacific and are tutored by Mr Wilson. The Gypsy Pickers are consistently the top guitar ensemble in the Waikato, having earned a gold placing at the Waikato Itinerant Music Festival almost every year since its inception. The band has also recorded two albums.

The HBHS Pipe Band

The HBHS Pipe Band formed in 2017 and is tutored by Mr Dent and Mrs Eade. The band performs annually at school events, such as open day, prize-giving, assemblies and the HBHS Foundation Luncheon. The Pipe Band debuted at its first competition, the 2018 Waikato Itinerant Music Festival, earning a silver medal placing. The Pipe Band recently represented the school at the 2019 Super 8 Cultural Festival. 

The HBHS Drumline

The HBHS Drumline also formed in 2017 and is tutored by Mr Dent. The drumline performs annually at school events, such as open day and assemblies. The Drumline debuted at its first competition, the 2018 Waikato Itinerant Music Festival, earning a silver medal placing. 


For enquiries about musical groups at the school please contact:

Mr Timothy Dent
Director of Culture
Tel: (07) 853 0440 ext 2097
Email: [email protected]

Mr Bevan Galbraith
TCR Music
Tel: (07) 853 0440 ext 2097
Email: [email protected]