RNCM Shortlisted for Two Times Higher Awards

Two RNCM projects have been shortlisted for a Times Higher Education Award: After the Silence: Music in the Shadow of War for Excellence and Innovation in the Arts, and the Children’s Opera Into the Labyrinth for Widening Participation or Outreach Initiative of the Year.

The good news follows the RNCM’s outstanding National Student Survey (NSS) and Research Excellence Framework (REF) results, which rate the institution as the UK’s top independent music college for overall student satisfaction and the UK’s leading music college for research.

IWMN After the silence screen

Taking place in July 2014, After the Silence: Music in the Shadow of War was a three day event at IWM North commemorating the centenary of the First World War. Over 300 students took part, performing 85 works including 25 world premières, ranging from intense grittiness and iconic classical works, to morale-boosting jazz and ragtime, transforming the iconic venue into a living installation in which every emotion was exposed and examined.

Dr Michelle Castelletti, Artistic Director, said: ‘After the Silence was a great example of the exciting and innovative work the RNCM produces. In complete contrast to a traditional concert experience, we worked with the Libeskind architectural statement to create a curated soundscape that allowed people to make their own path through an ever-changing musical art gallery. I am thrilled for everyone involved that this specific event has been recognised by the Times Higher Education Awards.’

Into the Labyrinth2

The Children’s Opera is a great example of the work the RNCM does in the wider community. Forming part of RNCM Engage, the Children’s Opera sees a creative team (including a professional composer, designer and number of RNCM students) work with pupils from primary schools across Manchester to create a scene for a new opera based on the National Curriculum. Following rehearsals, pupils from all schools then come together at the College to perform two public performances in the RNCM Theatre.

Michelle added: ‘To also be shortlisted in this category confirms the wonderful work the RNCM does in the community each year. The Children’s Opera Project has been part of our annual Artistic Programme, and a key element of our Engagement work, since 2009. It enables us to reach a diverse range of children who may not otherwise have access to live music, building on the positive impact of music on self-confidence, social development and the wider curriculum.’

Each year the THE Awards showcase the pioneering spirit, adaptability and sheer quality of the sector. Hundreds of nominations for outstanding institutions, departments and individuals were submitted across 18 categories, covering the full range of university activity.

John Gill, THE editor, said: ‘The achievements of our universities, which transform students’ lives and carry out pioneering research day in, day out, deserve to be recognised, and over the last decade the Times Higher Education Awards have become one of the sector’s most hotly anticipated events. This year, the 11th year of the awards, we had more entries than ever before, and are delighted to have such strong shortlists, highlighting the strength of universities the length and breadth of the country.’

The full shortlist for all 18 categories is available on the Awards website and the winners will be announced on Thursday 26 November 2015 at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London.

4 September 2015