Studying in the Historical Performance department will enable you to further your individual musicianship, instrumental technique, knowledge of historical performance practice and artistic creativity.

Classes

Below you will find a list of the types of classes and modules that have been on offer at the Academy.

This CPD Diploma course is an opportunity for professional portfolio career musicians to gain valuable skills, knowledge and practical experience in the field of creative music leadership.

On this course you will take part in lectures and seminars at the Academy, covering topics including:

  • Designing, leading and evaluating projects for schools
  • Improvisation and collaborative composition
  • Work with older people, including those living with dementia
  • Hospitals and health care settings
  • Working with people with special educational needs
  • Early Years settings
  • Cross-arts work

You will benefit from 20 hours of one-to-one tutorials throughout the year, which may be used flexibly. You may wish to group your hours of tutorials into blocks of several hours at key points in the year — for example to explore a specific topic in more depth, or in preparation for a practical project which you would define and lead in the summer term.

You will be required to keep a learning journal over the course of the year. You will be encouraged to draw on this when submitting a reflective portfolio which examines the skills and abilities required for creative leadership, the extent to which you feel that you have progressed, your strengths, and the areas that require further attention.

As well as being offered opportunities to be part of Open Academy projects, you may also be offered placements on projects with some of our partners, including Wigmore Hall, Spitalfields Music, Glyndebourne Opera, the Royal Opera House, English Touring Opera and London Sinfonietta.

In the final term of the course, you will be supported to design, lead and evaluate your own project.

Department Classes
And Activities

Undergraduate students take weekly academic classes in addition to their Historical Performance studies. Classes such as Techniques and Analysis, Conducting, Technology, Keyboard Skills and Western Music History are designed to complement and add to your creative development as a performer.

In addition to weekly individual lessons, both undergraduate and postgraduate Historical Performance students participate in the following activities:

Performance Classes/Masterclasses

Performance Classes are led by renowned musicians from around the world and give you an opportunity to experiment and explore communication skills in solo repertoire and to receive direct feedback about all aspects of your performance.

Chamber Music

Chamber music is at the heart of the Historical Performance Faculty and you will have opportunities to perform in several mixed ensembles, playing repertoire from Renaissance to Romantic. There are also opportunities to join the recorder consort, oboe band, viol consort and other ensembles. All groups are coached by Academy professors or visiting guests who help guide and prepare students for assessed performances and frequent public concerts.

Repertoire sessions

We hold dedicated classes for learning and preparing standard professional repertoire such as Passions, masses and other orchestral works to ensure our students are already familiar with major pieces when playing in gigs and professional ensembles.

Baroque Dance

You will take part in dance projects. All of our students learn to play dance music, in order to work effectively with dancers and to appreciate dance elements in instrumental music. Most of our students also learn to dance, but anyone with any physical issues is able to set their own pace.

Basso Continuo

Whatever instrument you play, you will have lessons in keyboard continuo playing and realisation depending on your individual experience, expertise and interest. You will learn what to listen for, and what to ask for, from continuo players.

Lecture Workshops

Lecture Workshops are held throughout the year and discuss the main areas of historical performance practice from the Medieval to the Romantic. Classes combine theoretical explanation and discussions with practical application to relevant repertoire.

Orchestra and Ensemble Performance

Students gain unrivalled experience in ensemble playing on historical instruments through orchestral opportunities at the Academy and beyond. You will rehearse and perform regularly and concerts are often led by members of the Academy’s own team as well as visiting artists.

Open Days

Our Virtual Open Days are back again in September. Check out all our content on the Open Days Hub.