Music Theory Classes for Adults

Fill in the gaps in your musical knowledge

music notation

These intensive music theory courses will take you through the grades of AMEB Musicianship, an internationally-recognised music theory syllabus. Extra course material shows you how the theory applies to both classical and contemporary music. Learn the secrets of music, and how to apply them. The courses provide a background to the understanding of music for adults who are learning to sing or play a musical instrument. An excellent opportunity to learn new skills or refresh old ones.

Complete courses through the grades of Musicianship

Ancient Greek Musicians

Grades 1-2

2 hours a week for 8 weeks
This course integrates the material from Grades 1 and 2 into a logical progression, with revision each week of concepts learnt.
Ancient Egyptian musicians

Grade 1

2 and a half Saturdays or Sundays
Grade 1 introduces many of the basics of scales, keys, rhythm, and notation, and begins the process of learning composition.
Musicians from the Codex Manesse, 14th century

Grade 2

2 and a half Saturdays or Sundays
Grade 2 introduces more about rhythm, keys, chords, and composition.
Renaissance musicians

Grade 3

2 hours a week for 8 weeks
Grade 3 covers such new material as composing melodies, cadences, four-part harmony, and modes.
Painting of The Concert After the Meal

Grade 4

2.5 hours a week for 8 weeks
Grade 4 covers aural training, interrupted cadences, the Baroque period, melody-writing and four-part harmony.
Painting of The Wedding at Cana by Veronese

Grade 5

2.5 hours a week for 16 weeks (2 terms)
Grade 5 introduces melody writing in two parts, non-chord tones, secondary chords, and introductions to the symphony orchestra, chamber music, and lieder.
painting of C. P. E. Bach and Frederick the Great playing music

Grade 6

2.5 hours a week for 24 weeks (3 terms)
Grade 6 continues to develop melody-writing and four-part harmony, and explores Romantic piano music and chamber music for strings, piano and woodwind.

More information

Musicians from the Cantigas de Santa Maria

FAQs: General information about the classes

Information about the venue, transport, parking, course materials and prerequisites
Renaissance music concert

What people say

Read what people have said about Susan’s music theory courses
music notes and symbols on a plate

Short workshops

Susan also conducts one-off workshops on various aspects of music theory, education and practice.


“I found it very interesting and informative. Susan’s easy teaching style along with a comprehensive workbook and supported by many aural examples made it easy to grasp and cement the musical concepts in this course. I particularly liked the use of the many contemporary music examples Susan incorporated”

“A major plus was the obvious enthusiasm and ability you have to explain”

“Susan’s knowledge, obvious love of music and her warm and helpful style were very much appreciated. Thank you for helping to unravel what was previously a complete mystery to me!” - Leslee, North Rocks

“This has been most beneficial - putting everything into context”

“I am so grateful to have done Musicianship 1-4 and got so much pleasure from the courses. You are a first rate teacher for whom I have the greatest admiration and appreciation. Coming back to music has been the best thing that I’ve done in retirement and it is hard to describe the pleasure I’ve experienced”

“What surprised me most was just how enjoyable each class was – we covered the materials, but it was fun and friendly, and it fired up an enthusiasm to go further and learn more. I am sorry it is over! For anyone who wants to embark on a journey of musical understanding, I would recommend the course (and you as a teacher) without any hesitation or qualification.”

- Simon, Dawes Point

“I thoroughly enjoyed the course”

Read more testimonials

About Susan Deas

Susan Deas is a professional musician, lecturer and teacher. She has been teaching piano for over twenty years, and her students learn both classical and contemporary styles, including playing by ear and improvisation. Susan also gives professional development workshops and lessons to private music teachers. She performs professionally as a pianist and organist, and lectures in music theory and music appreciation for Sydney University’s Centre for Continuing Education. Susan’s training includes a Bachelor of Music with a major in Performance (Piano) and Musicology, a Master of Music Studies (Studio Pedagogy), a Bachelor of Arts (Communications), and an A.Mus.A in Musicianship. Susan is an Accredited Member of the Music Teachers’ Association of NSW.

More about Susan’s qualifications

Susan’s other music courses

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