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MMus Historically Informed Performance Practice

Introduction

The MMus in Historically Informed Performance Practice is offered by the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in conjunction with the University of Glasgow. It will provide you with opportunities to develop insight and experience in historical performance practice of music, through a combination of vocal or instrumental study, performance-related academic research and an element of apprenticeship with professional ensembles.

The programme draws upon the staff expertise and facilities of both institutions, offering a unique opportunity to study alongside world-class performer-scholars within both the University and the Conservatoire environment.

Your study will involve attending seminar series, practical presentations and a practical portfolio. You will also be assessed by dissertation and through a performance recital.

As an accomplished performer, you will find that this programme will enhance your performance skills and knowledge with detailed, rigorous study of historical performance practice (particularly of music of the 17th and 18th centuries).

If you are aspiring to perform professionally or wishing to undertake historical research relating to performance practice, or both, this programme is designed for you.

Photo credit: John Wood

Introduction

The MMus in Historically Informed Performance Practice is offered by the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland in conjunction with the University of Glasgow. It will provide you with opportunities to develop insight and experience in historical performance practice of music, through a combination of vocal or instrumental study, performance-related academic research and an element of apprenticeship with professional ensembles.

The programme draws upon the staff expertise and facilities of both institutions, offering a unique opportunity to study alongside world-class performer-scholars within both the University and the Conservatoire environment.

Your study will involve attending seminar series, practical presentations and a practical portfolio. You will also be assessed by dissertation and through a performance recital.

As an accomplished performer, you will find that this programme will enhance your performance skills and knowledge with detailed, rigorous study of historical performance practice (particularly of music of the 17th and 18th centuries).

If you are aspiring to perform professionally or wishing to undertake historical research relating to performance practice, or both, this programme is designed for you.

Photo credit: John Wood

Programme Outline

There are two routes available for this programme: one weighted toward performance, the other toward musicological enquiry.

Core courses include

  • Two series of seminars in historically informed performance practice
  • Practical presentation
  • Practical portfolio
  • Dissertation
  • Assessed performance recital

You will have the opportunity to undertake workshops, rehearsals and potentially performances in collaboration with leading ensembles such as the Dunedin Consort and Concerto Caledonia.

As a UNESCO City of Music, Glasgow offers enormous opportunities to become involved with music making at a professional level. There is ample opportunity for ensemble playing, leading to the development of valuable musical team working and interpersonal skills.

Staff and masterclasses

Professor John Butt – University of Glasgow

Dr David McGuinness – University of Glasgow

Professor David Watkin – Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Audition requirements

The audition and interview

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.

MA Historically Informed Performance Practice

Applicants should select repertoire from the instrument’s list but where possible, selecting repertoire that will demonstrate an interest in historically informed performance with particular reference to the music of the 18th century.

MA/MMus Performance and Pedagogy

Applicants should prepare the repertoire listed in the instrument lists. Following the audition, there will be an interview to discuss the applicant’s interest in pedagogy.

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.

  • We offer the unique opportunity to study alongside world-class performer-scholars, and to work both within the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland and the University of Glasgow.
  • The UK’s first UNESCO city of music, Glasgow is home to the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Scottish Opera and National Theatre of Scotland.
  • If you’re aspiring to perform professionally or wishing to undertake historical research relating to performance practice, or both: this programme is designed for you.
  • As an accomplished performer, this programme will enhance your performance skills and knowledge with detailed, rigorous study of historical performance practice (particularly of music of the 17th and 18th centuries).
  • You will benefit from access to facilities including seminar and practice rooms, the University of Glasgow and RCS library, audio labs and an electroacoustic music studio, the Royal Conservatoire and University’s concert halls and studios. .