The Instrumental Music Teacher : Autonomy, Identity and the Portfolio Career in Music book cover
1st Edition

The Instrumental Music Teacher
Autonomy, Identity and the Portfolio Career in Music

ISBN 9780367476946
Published September 29, 2020 by Routledge
142 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Instrumental teaching in the UK is characterised by a lack of regulation and curriculum, whereby individuals can teach with no training or qualification. Kerry Boyle explores the way in which individuals who begin teaching can negotiate successful careers in music without formal training. Existing studies suggest that individuals in this context have complex understandings of professional identity, preferring to identify as musicians or performers rather than teachers, even when most of their income is derived from teaching. Boyle explores the complex working lives of instrumental teachers in the UK, including routes into instrumental teaching and the specific meanings associated with the role and identity of the professional musician for individuals involved in portfolio careers in music. Through an examination of the lived experience of instrumental teachers, this study highlights the need to revise existing notions of the professional musician to acknowledge contemporary careers in music. The resulting insights can be used to inform and enhance existing approaches to careers in music and contribute to career preparation in undergraduate music students.

Table of Contents


Chapter One  

The Instrumental Teacher – key questions  

Chapter Two      

Instrumental Teaching in the UK 

Chapter Three   

Understanding the Development of Professional Identity in Instrumental

Chapter Four    

Careers in instrumental teaching - the study findings. 

Chapter Five   

Autonomy and agency in instrumental teaching 

Chapter Six  

Identity conflict - unpacking the musician identity 

Chapter Seven  

Professional identity and the portfolio career in music

Chapter Eight    

Career preparation and employability 

Chapter Nine  

Key Questions Revisited  


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Kerry Boyle is a lecturer, researcher and vocal tutor at Canterbury Christ Church University. In addition, she works as a singing teacher and choral director in a range of institutions and is the director of Canterbury Vocals.