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Keyboard Department (Undergraduate)

Our keyboard department will develop your individual skills in a supportive, innovative and challenging environment.

Overview

Our Keyboard staff bring a wealth of experience to their teaching and enjoy active performing and recording careers. You will benefit from their expertise in your weekly lessons and regular performance classes. Students can also elect to split their one-to-one lessons between two principal study teachers; a practice which is encouraged and supported by the department. Students also have weekly opportunities to work with other members of the keyboard faculty through the teaching rota in operation for performance classes or by signing up for additional piano classes.

Principal study lessons and performance classes are complemented by a wide variety of supporting study options. These include:

  • Classical improvisation
  • Conducting
  • Piano technique
  • Organ and harpsichord seminars
  • Sightreading
  • Piano for Dance
  • French repertoire classes with world-renowned pianist and scholar Roy Howat

Students may also make quality CD recordings in our state-of-the-art recording studio.

The department runs an innovative digital platform, where all performance classes and concerts are recorded and stored in a digital archive. The system is supported by a rich array of peer and tutor feedback and students can consult these materials throughout their studies, enabling them to watch, listen, and reflect on their playing as well as supporting the work and development of their peers.

Opportunities to perform are one of the key drivers of the department. In addition to regular showcase concerts, masterclasses, an annual Piano Festival and the PLUG contemporary music festival, keyboard students may also compete in over ten internal competitions. Prize money for the various internal competitions totals over £4,000 per annum. Our students also regularly win top prizes in many international and national competitions.

The important details

UK Applicant Deadline:
2 October 2023

International Applicant Deadline:
2 October 2023

Institution Code:
R58

Programme Code:
Performance - 300F OR Joint Principal Study - 301F

Audition Fee:
£65

Application Fee:
£28.50


Why Study Keyboard at RCS?

Individual Lessons


As part of your studies, you will receive an unparalleled 40.5 hours of principal study tuition and supporting studies classes each academic year. Lessons will support your development in a collaborative and caring setting.

Steinway Pianos


We have Steinway pianos through campus, with Steinway Model B grands in all dedicated piano teaching and practice rooms

Students perform at Gleneagles as part of a Symphony Orechestra.

Performance Opportunities


Throughout your studies, you will have a multitude of performance opportunities, including regular showcases, prestigious concerto opportunities, piano festivals, competitions and chamber music. We also run a number of internal competitions with prize money attached.

Cutting-edge Technology


Our Keyboard department utilises cutting-edge video technology for recording, documentation and peer feedback, which provides innovative structures for highly creative learning and development.

Masterclasses


You will benefit from a varied programme of masterclasses from distinguished visiting artists; recent visitors include Nikolai Lugansky, Steven Osborne, Idil Biret, Olga Kern, Andrei Gavrilov, Richard Goode, Angela Hewitt, Bernard d’Ascoli, Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, Leslie Howard, Elisabeth Leonskaja, Malcolm Martineau and Pascal Rogé

Professional Partnerships


During your studies you will have the opportunity to audition to perform a concerto with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and RCS Symphony Orchestra.

Meet the Head of Department

Professor Fali Pavri enjoys a busy and varied international career as soloist, chamber musician and teacher. He has performed with world-renowned artists like Mstislav Rostropovich, Nicola Benedetti and Roderick Williams and toured around the world.

Fali had his first piano lessons in his native city of Mumbai, India with Shanti Seldon. This was followed by seven years in Moscow where he graduated with distinction from the Moscow Conservatory under Victor Merzhanov and then postgraduate studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London with Christopher Elton.

A committed and sought-after teacher with many international prize-winning students, Fali Pavri is Head of Keyboard and Professor of Piano at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. He has given masterclasses in many countries around the world and served on the jury of many international piano competitions.

Meet the Staff

  • Pianoforte

    Petras Geniusas
    Graeme McNaught
    Norman Beedie
    Stephen Coombs
    Sinae Lee

    Isobel Anderson

    Nicholas Ashton
    Saša Gerželj-Donaldson
    Aaron Shorr
  • Bachelor of Education Faculty and Keyboard Performance Studies

    Anna Rastopchina

    Anna Mavromatidi

    Saša Gerželj-Donaldson
    Edward Cohen
    Clare Sutherland

    Silviya Mihaylova

    Yoon-Kyung Kim
  • International Fellow of Piano

    Steven Osborne
  • International Fellow in Collaborative Piano

    Malcolm Martineau
  • International Visiting Professor in Contemporary Improvisation

    Anto Pett
  • Visiting Professor of Piano

    William Fong
  • Accordion

    Djordje Gajic
  • Organ

    David Hamilton
  • Harpsichord

    Jan Waterfield

Masterclasses

The Keyboard Studies department is fortunate to have masterclasses given by world renowned performers, including: 

  • Steven Osborne
  • Leon Fleisher
  • Richard Goode
  • Olga Kern
  • Jean-Efflam Bavouzet
  • Ingo Dannhorn
  • Idil Biret
  • Malcolm Martineau
  • Andre Gavrilov
  • Stephen Hough
  • William Fong
  • Lukas Geniusas
  • Dimitri Bashkirov
  • Dr Roy Howat
  • Dr Leslie Howard
  • Pascal Rogé
  • Roberto Prosseda
  • Louis Lortie

Facilities

Our performing, teaching and practice facilities are world class. The Stevenson Hall plays host to regular live recital broadcasts for BBC Radio 3 and the prestigious, triennial Scottish International Piano Competition.

Piano students benefit from a dedicated piano corridor with 10 practice rooms and 8 teaching rooms. Each piano practice room has a Steinway Model B grand and all piano teaching rooms are equipped with two Model B Steinways. There are also 6 Model D Steinways in our concert halls and recording studio and one Bosendorfer 280VC concert grand.

Additionally, we operate a free loan system where students may take upright pianos to use in their accommodation during the academic year.

Graduate Destinations

Graduates of the RCS keyboard department are extremely resourceful and find employment in a wide variety of areas and contexts, including prominent, performing careers in solo, chamber music and accompaniment. RCS keyboard graduates have also gained high level university and specialist music school teaching posts throughout the world.

Our students regularly win top prizes in many international and national competitions. During the past year alone, RCS piano students have won a total of 7 top prizes at international competitions:

  • 2nd Place and Audience Prize, Rubinstein International Piano Competition (Tel Aviv)
  • 1st Prize, UNISA South Africa Competition
  • 1st Prize, Rio International Piano Competition
  • 1st Prize, Ciurlionis Competition
  • 1st Prize Morocco Philharmonic Competition
  • BBC Young Musician of the Year Keyboard Final

Programme Structure

The programme structure for your studies will depend on whether you choose to undertake [instrument] principal study as part of BMus (Hons) Performance or BMus (Hons) Joint Principal Study. The content and modules for each programme are available on their respective pages:

BMus (Hons) Performance

BMus (Hons) Joint Principal Study


How to Apply

More information about how to apply, including entry requirements and tuition fee & funding information, is available on either our BMus (Hons) Performance page, or BMus (Hons) Joint Principal Study page, depending on which pathway you are interested in. The specific audition requirements for this principal study are detailed below:

Audition Information

All auditions are planned to take place in-person at our campus in Glasgow in November 2023.  Should you apply on time, you will be e-mailed directly with details of your audition date and time, and your UCAS Conservatoires track will be updated with this information.

International applicants are welcome to submit a recorded submission via Acceptd.

Recording Guidelines:

  • When setting up for your video recording, your body (typically, from about the waist up) and instrument should be the focal point of the frame. The committee wants to be able to see not just your face but how well you navigate your instrument.
  • The video recording should be provided in ONE continuous shot without separate tracks for different musical pieces.
  • Please begin the recording by introducing yourself to camera and stating what you will be performing. You can take a little time between pieces so long as your body must remain in the frame.

For more information on recording a video audition, Guitar Lecturer Matthew McCallister reveals his top tips on recording your music audition online:

Details of the repertoire requested for your in-person audition/recorded submission can be found below:

Piano

  • Performance of three contrasting works which should be of approximately Grade 8 standard or beyond

Harpsichord, Organ and Accordion

  • Performance of a programme of 15 minutes’ length, comprising three contrasting works

More from the Keyboard Department

Why RCS?

We are the only place in Europe where you can study all of the performing arts on the one campus. There is a distinctive creative energy at RCS and you’ll be made to feel part of our inclusive and diverse environment from the very beginning of your studies.

Our graduates are resourceful, highly employable and members of a dynamic community of artists who make a significant impact across the globe.

At RCS, students develop not just their art but their power to use it.

Find out more 

A ballerina wearing a teal dress jumps over the Kelpies monuments in Scotland during a grey day.

World Top Ten


We were voted one of the world’s Top Ten destinations to study the performing arts (QS Rankings) in 2024, the eighth time we have been placed in the top ten since the ranking was established in 2016.