RNCM Launches New Campaign Celebrating its Supporters

The RNCM has launched a new campaign celebrating the vital role supporters and donors play in ensuring every talented young musician can access a conservatoire education.

From the high level funding of established trusts and foundations to the financial support of individual music lovers, With You highlights the invaluable difference people and organisations make to the lives of many gifted musicians, regardless of nationality, financial circumstance or economic background.

Suzie Thompson, Director of Development, said: ‘Training to become a professional musician is a long and expensive pathway and for many it’s a journey that’s simply impossible without financial support.

‘The RNCM is proud of its position as a world-leading conservatoire and remains dedicated to ensuring that every talented musician, wherever they are in the world and whatever their financial circumstance, has the opportunity to study with us. And with you, with your support – however large or small – we can go some way to achieving this.’

To date RNCM scholarships and bursaries have supported a large number of outstanding young musicians. Mezzo-soprano Kathryn Rudge who, within 12 months of graduating in 2011 had secured leading roles with Glyndebourne, Opera North and English National Opera, says: ‘The opportunity to be a beneficiary of funding as a student is not only an exciting prospect, it also means that essential time and energy can be focused on the things we, as performers, want to invest in the most: music, collaboration, honing our skills as musicians…into everything we are passionate about.

kathryn rudge

‘I am a huge football fan. We openly speak in football conversations about how much the supporters mean to the game and how much the fans can influence a match. As fans we celebrate the history of the club and we hope to make more history. We unite together in good times and bad.

‘It’s a great feeling to belong to a team, to a family like that, and I feel the same way about my music…If I had my time again to pick a club to play for, a place to study, a team to belong to, it would be the RNCM every time.’

Likewise, Columbian conductor Carlos Agreda, who graduated this year and is now Conducting Fellow at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, said of the financial support he received during his studies: ‘Every single rehearsal and performance in which I took part represented a huge lesson for me as a conductor, not only because of the monitoring of my tutors and their constant tuition and support, but also for the self-reflection skills that I could develop.


‘I was offered the position of Conducting Fellow at the Curtis Institute of Music, one of the top most renowned music institutions in the world, after a very competitive exigent audition that I would not have been able to do without my time at the RNCM. It is heart-warming to know that there are people out there who are always willing to help musicians to grow.’

In today’s climate, with tuition fees at a minimum of £9000 each year and the yearly cost of living totalling £14,700*, undergraduates can expect to enter their finals with an average debt of £60,000, with further study a requirement for many. The essential financial support raised from With You will ensure that the RNCM continues to attract the brightest, most creative, young musicians who – for whatever reason – might not afford to take up their place.

Suzie added: ‘The RNCM thrives because of its staff and students; every one of them make it the special place it is. It also thrives because of its supporters, all of whom play a vital part in ensuring the College remains at the forefront of music education and that every talented young musician has the opportunity to fulfil their potential.’

*Data taken from www.nus.org.uk: out of the £14,700 living costs, £5,500 is spend on housing and £9,200 on additional living. The maintenance loan available to students is £8,200 leaving a shortfall of £6,500 per annum.

6 October 2016