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Our Story

What's in a name?

Way back in 1989, a boy was sitting in a large classroom filled with Grade 5 Theory students, slowly falling to sleep. All of a sudden, the no-nonsense, ex-military teacher screamed out an unlikely impression of an alarm bell.

"And now, ladies and gentlemen", he said hoarsely, "you will never forget that the triad on the dominant in a minor key is a major triad!"

And we never did forget...

David Clements was a much-loved teacher of brass and music theory at Christ's Hospital school, in Horsham, Sussex, and a former Royal Marines bandsman. Many of his students went on to very successful musical careers, and some of them decided to build an e-learning music theory website. Mr Clements was such a great teacher that we decided to name the site in his honour — hence Clements Theory.

"Clements Theory" is a trading name of The Well-Tempered Listener Ltd, a company founded in 2008 by Tim Benjamin. A respected composer, he holds a DPhil in Music from Oxford University and a first class honours degree from the Royal Northern College of Music, and examines music theory for the ABRSM. And of course, he went to school at Christ's Hospital where he was introduced to music theory by Mr Clements.

Here are a few facts and figures about us:

  • We have a staff of four
  • Between us we have two composers and play 9 instruments (not all at the same time!)
  • We're based in the West Yorkshire countryside
  • There are more than 7000 music theory questions in our database!

"This software really helped us to raise the standard of musical literacy of our students. It was easy to monitor the progress of our students in a single view and easy to see detailed reports of students' understanding."

— Paul A James M.A.
Head of Music, The Bishop of Hereford's School

"Can I say how fantastic I think your website is?
The learning materials are much more accessible than the books available, the exercises are excellent and the whole display is extremely user friendly."

— Paula
Clements Theory user and recent AB Grade 5 Theory candidate