Violist from 1972 recalls the RNCM’s first concert, 40 years on

Following on from last Thursday’s 40th anniversary concert, Clare Scott, Manager of the Principal’s Executive Office here at the RNCM, recalls performing in the RNCM’s inaugural concert on 7 November 1972 at Manchester Town Hall.  

‘I was a student of the Northern School of Music (NSM), studying viola, piano and singing.  My first term was spent at the old Northern School building situated right next to the Mancunian Way (now MMU’s Student Union building) and then we moved into the brand new RNCM building in January 1973. 

It had a very different feel from the ‘family’ atmosphere presided over by Ida Carroll at the NSM.  The facilities were very different as you might expect, but many hours were spent tramping around the 3rd floor corridors in an attempt to find a vacant practice room – no pink forms of fancy room booking systems in those days!  One thing I do remember: each student was required to attend a five-minute interview with the Principal, then John Manduell, now Sir John, (quite a scary experience!) in the very same location to which I returned as Executive Assistant to the then Principal, Edward Gregson, in 2005 – 33 years later!

I don’t remember very much about [becoming involved in the RNCM String Orchestra] – I guess there was an audition process of some kind … it was probably formed just for this occasion, I would think.  I remember [the Bliss piece, ‘Music for Strings’] being a challenging piece requiring a lot of work.  The acoustic in the Town Hall was also very different to what we were used to.  There was a great sense of occasion about that night.'

Clare Scott, nee Hall, as she appeared at registration in 1972

Clare Scott, nee Hall, as a new student at the Northern School of Music/Royal Northern College of Music, 1972

Clare now, Manager of the Principal's Executive Office

Clare now, in her role as Manager of the Principal's Executive Office

21 November 2012