Classes & activities
In addition to weekly individual lessons, as a conducting student at the Academy you will participate in:
Conducting and Baton Technique
You will learn and practise beating patterns, and the means to communicate your musical intentions through gesture.
Concerts and Collaborations
The Conducting Faculty regularly collaborates with departments across the Academy. You will work with singers from Royal Academy Opera and from the Vocal Faculty. You will work on twentieth-century and twenty-first-century repertoire, and on premieres of new works by Composition students. You will conduct a variety of ensembles in rehearsals, workshops and concerts within the Academy and have opportunities to organise your own projects.
The Academy regularly invites highly celebrated and famous conductors from all over the world to conduct orchestral and operatic performances with our students. You will have many opportunities to observe their rehearsals and often the Head of Conducting will organise lessons or discussions with visiting artists, which allows you to meet and interact with leading professionals.
Repertoire classes and Masterclasses
These take place throughout the year and students analyse, discuss and practise core repertoire under the guidance and expertise of Academy professors, Visiting Professors, composers and guest artists. You will study a broad range of styles including contemporary music, early music, concerto and mainstream repertoire.
Aural, Keyboard Skills and Score-reading
In these classes, you will be able to hone some practical skills necessary for good rehearsal technique, such as fluency in instrument transposition and baton technique, as well as studying important sources such as original manuscripts or personal scores belonging to conductors such as Sir Georg Solti, Sir Charles Mackerras and Sir Colin Davis. Keyboard skills are not an essential requirement for entry onto the programme but there are opportunities to develop these should you wish to do so.
In addition to these regular classes and tutorials, a series of ‘professional development’ seminars are arranged, in which Academy professors and outside experts are invited to work with our conductors for example, in history and performance style, for analysis and for programme building and planning. There are also sessions with Patrick Russill (Fernside Head of Choral Conducting) where you have a chance to gain experience in choral repertoire and conducting.
We welcome the finest students from around the world to learn and perform alongside globally renowned artists, ensuring they benefit from a music-making environment of the highest quality.