Whether it be band, orchestra, choir, or music theory, some form of a music class should be required due to the psychological benefits that music can have on the brain. Even if a child may not be musically gifted, taking part in a class that focuses on the roots of music and the theory behind it can reap benefits that no other course can give. Listening to or playing music releases a stimulant in the brain that calms the mind, focuses the person, and improves memory.
Music performances is probably one of the most important things as a musician, besides playing music using their specific instrument well. Music performances is a way to evaluate a performer's skill, such as tests in school, which can help the musician improve and become better. Since a performance is like a test, it should be required in schools.
No, I do not believe music performance courses should be required in schools. Music courses are something that should be extra curricular because they do not impart knowledge that is vital to a child, and not all children are gifted musically. Unlike math or reading or spelling, music is something that a child does not NEED to know, and should be given the choice as to if they wish to learn it or not.