Research at the Academy is focused on the interrogation of musical creativity. This takes many forms, but a common thread running through our work is the interaction of performers, composers, instrument makers and scholars.

The Academy is a strongly collaborative environment, in which creative and intellectual curiosity is encouraged in students and staff alike. By sustaining a dialogue between all members of our community, we aim to re-evaluate and build on our musical heritage and performance traditions, and to generate new types of creative practice.

Much of the Academy’s research activity is practice-based, focusing on the practical aspects of music in the ares of performance and composition. This is a broad field, encompassing the analysis and application of performance materials and research on instruments, as well as the critical and reflective study of practice itself.

The Academy’s research culture is underpinned by our rich collection of musical artefacts, including our globally renowned collection of fine stringed instruments, our historic pianos, our large holdings of composers’ manuscripts and annotated performance materials from leading musicians from the nineteenth century to the present day, and our significant collection of musical iconography.

Research at the Academy informs and enhances all areas of our teaching. Our programmes of study are structured to encourage students to develop and pursue research relevant to their professional aspirations. Many of our regular research events are also open to the public. These include experimental workshops, composer forums, probing interviews with leading figures from the music profession, lecture recitals, and symposia and colloquia.

The deadline for 2015 applications was 19th January 2015.

To apply to join the MPhil, candidates were asked to use the PDF application form which is in the ‘Quick Links’ box at the top of this page. The form contains guidance notes and reference forms. Applications for the Research Degree Programmes are dealt with in two stages. Firstly they are subject to an initial assessment by the entry panel. If your application passes this stage, you will be invited to attend for interview in London.

Latest news

Professor Jane Glover CBE


In June 2016, Professor Jane Glover will step down as Director of Royal Academy Opera after eight years.

NCEM Young Composers Award 2015


Composition alumnus John Goldie-Scot awarded the NCEM Young Composers Award.

Latest blog

The versatile performer


If there’s one leitmotif that comes closest to encompassing everything we train Academy students for, it is perhaps ‘expect the unexpected’.

Geidai Connections


The Academy deepens its relationship with Japan with agreements with Tokyo Geidai, visits, and student and professor exchanges.

Latest News

Classical Music ‘Hyper-Production’ and Practice-As-Research


Dr Amy Blier-Carruthers, Lecturer in Postgraduate Studies, secures funding from AHRC Digital Transformations scheme