From the Music Suite at St John's College . . .

From the Music Suite at St John’s College . . .


Tuition by our specialist instrumental teachers is available on a wide range of instruments at St. John’s. Brass, strings and Woodwind instruments are provided free. It is preferable for Year 9 and compulsory for Years 10-13 Option Music students to receive instrumental lessons. This is because directed learning is an integral part of the academic course. It is not compulsory if your son is studying the Years 12-13 Non-Performance Option Music Course. Any student in the College can learn an instrument at any time in any year.

We are very proud to have the following talented and respected teachers in our team:

  • Strings & String Ensemble – Mrs Hilary Baker
  • Piano – Mrs Sally Rutgers
  • Voice and Bass Guitar – Mr Greg Conrad
  • Guitar and Bass – Mr Neil Matcheson
  • Drums – Mr Joe Atkin
  • Woodwind, Brass and Jazz-Rock-Pop Band – Mr Christopher Wilson
  • Pipes – provided externally

Click the following link to download a tuition form: Instrumental Tuition Contract. This is an editable PDF which can be completed and returned electronically. Alternatively, pop into the School Office for one.


Senior Band
The Jazz Band is a great introduction to Jazz, Swing and Funk styles and participates in band competitions and festivals both locally and nationally. It allows players of intermediate and advanced levels to specialise their development.

Junior Band
The Junior Band is the perfect place for beginner and intermediate players to discover the exciting world of music and the awesomeness of playing in a group.

Vocal Group
The Choir sings for Masses, in the community and enters The Big Sing competition. Though they sing a broad range of music, Barbershop is a particular favourite style.

Combined St. John’s and Sacred Heart Concert Band
The band performs in concerts and festivals, such as the Hawke’s Bay Festival of Bands, and to our feeder primary/intermediate schools. It is an exciting group that benefits from the breadth of instruments, the repertoire such a group lends itself and the strengths, experience and skills of the players. It plays a range of music from TV and film, rock and pop as well as atmospheric and dramatic.

Assembly Band
This important group supports whole-school singing in Assembly. They give a harmonic and driving accompaniment to the student and staff body for the St. John’s Anthem, National Anthem and sacred and secular inspirational songs.


School Production
Every year or two, we have our collaboration with Sacred Heart College to produce our joint-school production. In 2017 we did the amazing Hairspray and 2019 the fun classic gangster musical Bugsy Malone.

Senior School Examination Evening
This annual event showcases the musical talents of our senior students, selecting solo and ensemble pieces recorded for NCEA credits.

Junior School Gig
This is a great opportunity for our burgeoning Year 9 and 10 musos to perform – sometimes for the first time – to family friends and whanau.

Smokefree Rockquest and Pacifica Beats
St. John’s enters Rock and Reggae bands for these competitions. In recent years, our bands have progressed to the national top 20 finalists in the Smokefree Rockquest.
Chamber Music

We have boys participating in the Chamber Music ensemble competitions each year. Some groups are just St. John’s boys and some are combined with other schools such as Sacred Heart College and Hastings Girls.

Eats, Beats and Treats
This is a great opportunity for solo, duo and larger ensembles like the Jazz Band and Mr Dickson’s Reggae Band to perform and entertain the audience. It’s also an open mic event for anyone to air their vocal talents!

Orchestra Day
Our brass, wind and string players attend this combined secondary schools’ workshop and gaining much from the experience of playing in such a large ensemble.

Christopher Wilson
Director of Music

Music Gallery