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MMus/MA Repetiteurship

Repetiteurs are the unsung heroes of any opera company and are highly skilled. Our repetiteurship programme will give you the opportunity to learn and study all the core skills needed.

Overview

As a student on the MMus/MA Repetiteurship programme, you will work and study as part of the internationally reputable Alexander Gibson Opera School. In your studies you will work regularly with staff from Opera School, who have considerable professional experience both nationally and internationally.

You are required to be technically proficient at the keyboard to a very high standard. You will play music from Auber to Zandonai, covering all styles throughout the centuries. Repetiteurs must be able to coach singers in the major operatic languages, demanding not only a high degree of musicianship but psychological insight into the characters they are coaching and the singers standing before them. 

The programme will give you the opportunity to learn and study all the core and related skill sets; piano lessons, languages, coaching, continuo playing, style and repertoire. A large part of your training will be in practical sessions, playing for classes, opera scenes rehearsals, masterclasses and, where appropriate, conducting.

Recent productions have included Mozart’s Idomeneo, L’étoile (Chabrier), Dead Man Walking (Heggie), Cendrillon (Massenet), The Rape of Lucretia (Britten), Flight (Dove) and Die Dreigroschenoper (Weill).

A full fee waiver is available for all Repetiteur students.

The important details

UK Applicant Deadline:
2 October 2023

International (including EU) Applicant Deadline:
1 December 2023

Institution Code:
R58

Programme Code:
MMus: 860F / MA: 894F

Audition Fee:
£65.00

Application Fee:
£27.50


Why Study Repetiteurship at RCS?

Performance opportunities


The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland stages over 600 performances each year, in a range of internal and external venues. Working within the Alexander Gibson Opera School, your studies will allow you the opportunity to work on many exciting and unique productions.

A range of dance, acting, music RCS students posing on set.

Collaboration


RCS is the only conservatoire in Europe which hosts all of the performing arts on one campus, so interdisciplinary collaboration is encouraged and celebrated.

Learn from the Best


With weekly 90 minute one-to-one lessons in your principal study, your studies will be supported by some of the UK’s leading teachers and musicians, many of whom working with the UK’s foremost orchestras and ensembles.

Scottish Opera


RCS and Scottish Opera are embarking on a new collaboration, commencing in 2025, which will provide you access to the expertise and networks afforded by Scotland’s national opera company alongside your studies at the conservatoire.

Meet the Staff

  • Philip White

    Head of Opera

  • Duncan Williams

    Lecturer of Opera

Affiliation with Scottish Opera

From 2025, we are launching a brand new one-year Artist Diploma in Opera in partnership with Scottish Opera, the full details of which are subject to validation. This new collaboration is an exciting step forward in uniting Scotland’s national opera company and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

Read the full press release for full details about the new programme.

Read the press release

Graduate Destinations

Previous students who have studied this discipline at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland have gone on to study and work at the highest level including:

  • The National Opera Studio 
  • The Jette Parker Young Artists Programme at the Royal Opera House 
  • Scottish Opera 
  • English National Opera 
  • Opera North
  • The Amsterdam Opera Studio 

Programme Structure

The MMus is the standard two-year programme undertaken by most students.

The MA is a shortened version of the programme for students who wish to get a Masters degree in a single year of study.

The first three terms of the MMus and MA are identical: MA students complete a further module in term 4 in order to complete the degree in a single year. There is no difference in the nature of the degrees: both concentrate mainly on performance rather than academic work.

Principal Study 1 – 80 Credits  

  • Individual lessons 
  • Assessment: playing for performances, excerpts

Supporting Studies 1 – 30/20/10 Credits  

  • Negotiated departmental activities, such as rehearsals, playing for classes and external projects

Practice Research – 10 Credits  

  • Research project

Negotiated Study – 60 Credits 

  • Individual composition, performance or academic project

Principal Study 2 – 90 Credits  

  • Individual lessons 
  • Assessment: playing for performances, mock audition

Supporting Studies 2 – 30/20/10 Credits 

  • Negotiated departmental activities, such as rehearsals, playing for classes and external projects 

Entry Requirements

Academic Requirements

Candidates for both the MMus and MA are normally expected to hold a good honours (at least 2:2) degree, or its overseas equivalent, in a subject area relevant to the demands of the programme.

English language requirements

The language of study is English. Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to provide evidence of proficiency in English. We accept the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Level 6.0 (with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component) is required of applicants to the School of Music.

Additional requirements

In addition to the general entry requirements, candidates will preferably already have: 

  • Some repetiteur experience at professional or near-professional level 
  • Broad knowledge (and performance experience) of mainstream operatic repertoire, from performance and listening 
  • The ability to work encouragingly and effectively with others, including as part of a larger team

Experience of working in the context of operatic and/or musical theatre, and a knowledge of the main operatic languages (French, Italian, German) is desirable. 

Direct entry 

Applications for direct entry beyond Year 1 will be considered on a case-by-case basis and in accordance with the Royal Conservatoire’s Recognition of Prior (Experiential) Learning policy. If you wish to apply for direct entry, please mark the point of entry on UCAS Conservatoires application as 2.


Fees & Funding

Tuition fees

 

Funding & Scholarships

You can find out about the funding and scholarships available for studying at RCS by visiting our dedicated page:

Funding & Scholarships

Cost of Living & Programme Costs

In addition to tuition fees, it is estimated that you will need between £11,200 and £15,300 per year to live in Glasgow, plus programme costs. Much will depend on your lifestyle and whether your course runs for three or four terms. 

Programmes within the School of Music have a range of associated costs related to the specific activities required and advised by the programme team. You can find an indication of these costs below: 

School-of-Music-Programme-Costs.pdf 


How to Apply

Apply via UCAS Conservatoires

Applications are made through UCAS Conservatoires website. The UCAS Conservatoires application system is separate from the main UCAS undergraduate application system. If you wish to apply to conservatoires and universities within UCAS, you will need to register for both services.  

You can read our guidance about using UCAS Conservatoires on our dedicated how to apply page. 

We do not offer deferred entry. If you wish to commence in 2025, you must apply next year. 

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland institution code is R58. You will also require one of the following programmes codes to apply: MMus Repetiteurship – 860F OR MA Repetiteurship 849F 

The closing date for on-time applications for UK students is 2 October 2023 and for international students is 1 December 2023.  If you submit your application after this date, we cannot guarantee that your application will be reviewed by the audition panel. If you do want to submit a late application, you must contact admissions@rcs.ac.uk in the first instance to check we are accepting late applications 

Application/Audition fees

There is a UCAS Conservatoires application fee of £27.50. In addition to the application fee, each conservatoire charges an audition assessment administration fee. The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland charges an audition assessment administration fee of £65 for this programme.

We recognise that auditioning and interviewing for conservatoires, drama and ballet schools can be costly. The audition assessment administration fee charge allows us to offer a thorough and positive experience to all applicants and we encourage you to get in touch to ask the panel questions and find out more about the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland to see if it is the best place for you.

Policy

We have a number of policies and statements which you should read when applying to study at the Royal Conservatoire.

Please select the links below to read each policy.

References

It is your responsibility to ask two separate referees to write references and ensure that these are sent to RCS.

The references must be written by two different people and we will not accept references from family, other relatives or close friends. You can submit your UCAS Conservatoires application form and send your references at a later date, but they must be received prior to your audition date.

UCAS Conservatoires provides reference forms for you to download and send to your referees for completion.

Selection process

Applicants are selected first and foremost on the basis of merit and potential. However, due attention is also paid to the range of Principal Studies accepted in order to ensure the optimum experience for each student and to sustain the critical mass required for curricular activities, such as the symphony orchestra and choral activities.

Please note that the Conservatoire is obliged to offer one audition date per application. If you are unable to submit your application/audition recording by the deadline date above, you must email us immediately stating the reason. We have a specific period allocation to audition and all on time applications will receive a decision before Christmas. If your audition recording is delayed, there is a risk that places will already have been taken and your application may not be considered in the first round of scholarship allocation.

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 any pieces that were written for your instrument and piano accompaniment, you are encouraged to perform with piano accompaniment (whether live or pre-recorded) if practical for you. Be assured, however, that if this is not possible for you, then you will not be disadvantaged in any way. 

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

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GYNY47cVNBA.

Through audition, applicants will be required to demonstrate:

  • a high degree of technical competency on the instrument or voice in the service of specific repertoire 
  • an ability to demonstrate a considerable degree of understanding of the repertoire performed 
  • an ability to perform specific repertoire convincingly 
  • a considerable degree of self-confidence and creativity with respect to the repertoire performed 
  • a degree of self-sufficiency, initiative and independence in selecting, preparing and performing a particular programme 
  • a developing musical personality

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

Please prepare the following for your audition recording – 

  • Prepare a short, own choice piano piece (5 minutes maximum) 
  • Prepare two operatic scenes (own choice) one of which should be from a Mozart opera, and the other from a 19th or 20th century score. The scenes should be for a minimum of two characters / voices (ie. not just arias), the Mozart scene should contain some secco recitative and candidates should be prepared to play and sing from the vocal score, preferably in the original language. 
  • Prepare an excerpt from La Boheme Act 4

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.