Happy New Year from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
The warmest of welcomes to 2017 and to the year Scotland’s national conservatoire celebrates a very special birthday.
This year, in many different ways, we’re delighted to be marking the 170th anniversary of our pioneering role in performing arts education. As an institution, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland was born from the ambitions of a small group of Glaswegians who formed the Provisional Glasgow Athenaeum board. The group met for the first time on 18 January 1847 in the famous Steel’s Coffee House in the city’s Argyle Street and agreed their founding principles: “To provide mental cultivation, moral improvement and delightful recreation to all classes”¦.”
While we might use different words these days, we still embrace that founding mission to nurture great artistic potential in people regardless of background, class, ethnicity, gender, postcode or time zone.
Today the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is proud to be one of the world’s top ten performing arts educational institutions, one with an innovative curriculum which embraces trans-disciplinary creativity and one which has an award-winning commitment to widening access.
As we look towards a new year with a bold sense of purpose, the importance of the arts to society has never been greater. They offer both inspiration and challenge as well as having the power to transform the lives of both individuals and communities.
Across our campus in the heart of Glasgow, aspiring musicians, dancers, actors, filmmakers, designers and technicians come from across Scotland and internationally to explore their potential, expand their horizons and develop a wide range of skills which help shape them as citizens of the world. When they leave us, our graduates go on to make a difference through a broad range of actions and achievements be that on or behind stages and in concert halls, or in classrooms and across communities.
One of the most significant benefits of a performing arts education is that it embraces a wide range of skills, disciplines and social activities and empowers young people to communicate, collaborate and engage more effectively in whatever they end up doing. The performing arts open minds, remove borders and challenge students to learn and use the tools of communication to fullest effect be that the spoken word, the written musical score or the language of self-expression.
As the national conservatoire of Scotland, it’s central to our mission that we widen and deepen that reach, both throughout our own country and internationally. We continue to collaborate with great partners throughout the country and around the world as we seek out like minded individuals, organisations and institutions to learn from, share best practices and assert Scotland’s own unique brand of creativity.
On behalf of the staff team and of our students who will be the arts leaders of the future, our very best wishes for health, happiness and creativity throughout the year. At 170 years young, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is still proud to be sharing the transformative power of the arts far, wide and with passion with and for our nation and the wider world.