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MMus/MA Chamber Music

Introduction

Our new MMus programme in Chamber Music is the perfect fit for advanced performers wishing to immerse themselves in the world of chamber music. This programme is designed primarily for existing chamber ensembles who wish to further their development through study at Masters level. The individuals making up the group will normally have undertaken formal study beyond undergraduate level: as a team, you should be ready to commit to working together for the duration of the programme.

We also welcome applications from individual candidates who are able to demonstrate an aptitude for and experience of chamber music, and a keen desire to work with others. The offer of a place will be dependent upon the potential for viable ensembles to be formed.

Our chamber music ensembles form part of a thriving performance community, with opportunities to collaborate both with fellow musicians and artists from other disciplines. There are a number of RCS chamber music competitions for ensembles to enter, as well as potential opportunities for performances both in RCS and around Scotland.

With the support of the family of Hilary Rosin, RCS runs a series of Sunday morning chamber music concerts given by Scotland’s very best chamber musicians, featuring principals from the national orchestras and staff and
students of RCS.

Introduction

Our new MMus programme in Chamber Music is the perfect fit for advanced performers wishing to immerse themselves in the world of chamber music. This programme is designed primarily for existing chamber ensembles who wish to further their development through study at Masters level. The individuals making up the group will normally have undertaken formal study beyond undergraduate level: as a team, you should be ready to commit to working together for the duration of the programme.

We also welcome applications from individual candidates who are able to demonstrate an aptitude for and experience of chamber music, and a keen desire to work with others. The offer of a place will be dependent upon the potential for viable ensembles to be formed.

Our chamber music ensembles form part of a thriving performance community, with opportunities to collaborate both with fellow musicians and artists from other disciplines. There are a number of RCS chamber music competitions for ensembles to enter, as well as potential opportunities for performances both in RCS and around Scotland.

With the support of the family of Hilary Rosin, RCS runs a series of Sunday morning chamber music concerts given by Scotland’s very best chamber musicians, featuring principals from the national orchestras and staff and
students of RCS.

Programme Outline

The MMus degree is made up of four modules. The Principal Study is at the heart of the programme. There are ninety minutes of teaching per ensemble member per week allocated to this module, flexibly divided up between ensemble coaching and individual tuition. So, for instance, a string quartet might choose four hours of group work per week, plus one hour per fortnight each of one-to-one lessons. The assessment will comprise a number of public recitals by the group, with additional options available, including a lecture recital, studio recording, solo performance, and collaboration with a composer on the creation of a new work.

The Supporting Studies module offers a range of experiences in support of your principal study, including performance classes, workshops, masterclasses, rehearsals and concerts. The programme is completed by the Approaches to Critical Artistry module, in which you carry out a practice-based research project, and up to two Elective modules in each year of study.

The structure of the one-year MA programme is similar, including Principal Study, Supporting Studies, Approaches to Critical Artistry and the option to take one Elective. This programme is completed by the Negotiated Study module, offering the opportunity to pursue an significant period of independent study in an area of your own choosing.

Although the programme is primarily designed for existing ensembles, we will consider applications from suitably qualified individual candidates who are able to clearly demonstrate an aptitude for and experience of chamber music and a keen desire to work with others. Under these circumstances, the offer of a place will be dependent upon the potential for viable ensembles to be formed.

Full details of the structure of both the MMus and MA degrees are in the MMus-MA Guide for Applicants 2015-16, which can be found at http://www.rcs.ac.uk/studyhere/how-to-apply/music/.

Audition requirements

Before your audition, you will have 15 minutes (or more dependent on your Principal Study) to warm-up on your instrument. RCS is not able to offer additional practice facilities before the allocated warm-up time, because the building is in full use by current students or by other audition candidates.

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

The interview will assess the candidate’s suitability for the programme in terms of knowledge, experience and commitment.

Accompanists

Instrumentalists (excluding piano, guitar, jazz, Scottish music and percussion and timpani) and vocalists will be automatically allocated an official RCS accompanist to play for them at their audition (unless RCS is notified that the applicant intends to use his/her own). Applicants will be given time with the accompanist prior to their audition in order to run through their programme. RCS does not require advance notice of your audition programme.

 

Chamber Music

Ensembles should prepare a programme of approximately 40 minutes of music, which will be followed by a group interview lasting approximately 10 minutes. Individual candidates should prepare an approximately 40 minute programme – accompanied, not solo – drawn from the relevant instrumental list in this guide. Please list in your personal statement the other member/s of your ensemble.

 

All decisions will be posted on UCAS Conservatoires following your audition via UCAS Conservatoires Track, (you will need your username and password). You will also receive notification from UCAS Conservatoires when decisions on all your choices are available.

How to apply

Before applying we recommend that you follow our Applicant Guide journey which provides all the essential information regarding entry requirements, and the full application and audition process.

Begin your Applicant Journey here.

Making your application

Applications for the MMus/MA programme should be made through the UCAS Conservatoires website. There is a UCAS application fee of £25 (which is in addition to the audition fee) which allows you up to six choices of programme of study.

Why choose us?

The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is third in the world for performing arts education.

  • Busy schedule of masterclasses with visiting artists; recent visitors include the Brodsky Quartet and the Danish String Quartet
  • Only conservatoire in Europe to offer collaboration opportunities across all the performing arts
  • Opportunity to perform with resident ensembles including Stevenson Winds and Red Note Ensemble

Entry requirements

  • Normally a good Honours (at least 2.2) degree, or its overseas equivalent, in a subject area relevant to the demands of the programme

Entrance to the Conservatoire is based on talent, potential and ability, therefore consideration will be given to relevant experience which is deemed to compensate for any traditional education. We accept a wide range of qualification, including international qualifications. If you wish to check the suitability of your qualification/experience, please contact admissions@rcs.ac.uk.

English Language

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).

Other equivalent English Language qualifications may be considered, please contact admissions@rcs.ac.uk for more information.

  • IELTS – 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component

Audition Requirements

Audition requirements are given in the MMus-MA Guide for Applicants 2015-16, which can be found at http://www.rcs.ac.uk/studyhere/how-to-apply/music/.

Fees and scholarships

Tuition fees for academic year 2017-18

  • MMus Chamber Music (2 years) UK/EU Students – £8,094
  • MMus Chamber Music (2 years) International (non-EU) – £15,513
  • MA Chamber Music (1 year) UK/EU Students – £10,983
  • MA Chamber Music (1 year) International (non-EU) – £18,648

Scottish/EU students

New Scottish and EU domiciled students may be eligible for a Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loan. All eligible students will be able to apply directly to Student Awards Agency for Scotland (SAAS) for a non-means tested loan of up to £3,400. See the following website for further details of the PSAS scheme:

http://www.saas.gov.uk/full_time/pg/index.htm

Scottish domiciled postgraduate students on eligible courses can also apply for a Postgraduate Living Cost Loan up to £4,500 towards living expenses. This is in addition to the existing loan available towards the cost of their tuition fees.

Scholarships

Any potential student who auditions for a place at the Royal Conservatoire will automatically be considered for a scholarship. They are awarded on a combination of talent, potential and financial need. More information about Scholarships is available here

Sources of external funding

For more information about alternative funding sources, including external scholarships and bursaries, please visit here.

The Conservatoire’s International and Student Experience team are available to advise and assist applicants and current students in respect of queries about funding your studies at the Conservatoire. Please email or telephone +44 (0)141 270 8281/ +44 (0)141 270 8223 for further information.