Why RNCM?

The RNCM is alive with people who share your passion for music and our home is a city that lives and breathes it. Opportunities lie around every corner and we can’t wait to see what path you’ll choose.

A love of music opens doors to endless possibilities…Where will yours take you?

Why Choose Us?

A Family of Northerners

Known affectionately as The Northern, the RNCM is home to an incredible family of Northerners, and we’d love you to join us.

Keyboard Students laughing backstage at an RNCM Reunite event

Everyone here plays a part in maintaining our status as one of the most exciting and forward-thinking conservatoires, ensuring we’re a destination of choice for talented young musicians from all over the world. Our academic and professional services staff work tirelessly to create a world-class teaching and learning environment, and our students and alumni never fail to impress with the incredible things they achieve both on and off stage.

But don’t just take our word for it. Lots of Northerners are happy to tell prospective students like you all about RNCM life. Start the conversation at any time using our online chat feature.

A Vibrant City

Manchester is a fantastic city for students, offering an affordable lifestyle without compromising your experience. And while the RNCM is home to less than 1000, the city itself welcomes over 100,000, allowing you to benefit from the intimacy of conservatoire study while enjoying all the amazing things that university life brings.

Located in the North West of England, Manchester is recognised as one of the UK’s most popular cultural hotspots. In fact, our vibrant city has it all: a rich and varied music scene, a proud heritage of science and industry, nightlife, culture and politics, and an incredible sporting legacy.

Less than two-hours from London, exceptional transport links make coming in and out of the city easy, with Manchester International Airport providing the perfect connection to countries all over the world. The bustling city centre is just a short walk from the College, while train or car will take you to the stunning English countryside in no time.

You can find out all you need to know about Manchester – alongside details of Sir Charles Groves Hall of Residence, located right next door to the RNCM – here.

Excellent Facilities

We pride ourselves on offering high-quality performance and rehearsal spaces alongside outstanding resources, meaning you’re working in a professional environment from day one.

But don’t just take our word for it, explore key areas yourself in our virtual tours. They include everything from our Theatre and Concert Hall, to our Library, studios and smaller practice spaces.

Exceptional Teaching and Learning

We’re dedicated to providing an outstanding education that propels our students into careers as inspiring and versatile musicians, fully-equipped for exciting futures both on and off stage.

Whether you’re following a classical route or want to pursue popular music, our Undergraduate and Graduate Schools offer flexibility to build a programme that’s right for you. Studying alongside likeminded individuals, you’ll enhance and refine your technical, creative, and critical skills, developing professionally and personally within a stimulating and enviable environment.

Learn more here.

Professional Development

The music industry has changed significantly in recent years, and our newly revalidated undergraduate degrees and exceptional postgraduate options reflect this.

With a growing trend towards portfolio careers, we’ll always encourage you to look beyond your studies to ensure you gain and all-round experience while you’re with us. This is why we offer a range of professional opportunities to help you develop the skills needed to establish and maintain a successful future in a competitive sector.

Learn more here.

Unrivalled Performance

Embracing more than life on stage, performance is a key part of conservatoire training and one of the most exciting things about studying with us.

Supported by our diverse artistic programme, opportunities include everything from large orchestral projects and cross-school collaborations to full-scale opera productions, intimate chamber concerts and solo recitals.

Varying in size and focus, our orchestras and ensembles cover genres from classical to contemporary, and our thriving and energetic chamber music programme provides valuable opportunities to develop your skills through expert tuition, masterclasses and performance. You’ll also have the chance to gain an understanding of early performing styles, repertoire and technique, and if you have an interest and passion for jazz or choral singing, you’ll have the freedom and support to explore this too.

Learn more here.

Enviable Partnerships

We’ve worked hard to forge strong relationships with orchestras, ensembles and organisations across the UK and Europe.

Through Professional Experience Schemes, side-by-side initiatives, mentorships and, amongst others, community engagements, these partnerships provide exceptional opportunities for our students to develop projects, embrace real-world experiences and refine their career aspirations.

Alongside this, we’re also extremely proud to lead the International Benchmarking Group (IBG) and Interplay, two unique and established networks, uniting outstanding institutions worldwide to enhance the professional and personal development of young musicians.

Learn more here.

World-Class Research

Research is a cornerstone of the musical creativity and experimentation that flourishes at the RNCM, as well as a valuable activity in its own right.

We offer routes in Musicology, Music Psychology, Music Education, Composition and Performance (performance practice or practice-led research), all of which enable us to form and consolidate connections between research, teaching and practice. Whatever path you choose, you’ll have access to outstanding resources and facilities, exceptional supervision, individually tailored training, and opportunities for career development and enhancement at the RNCM, Manchester Metropolitan University (which validates and awards our research degrees) and through the North West Consortium Doctoral Training Partnership.

Learn more here.

Alumni We’re Proud Of

Being part of the RNCM family doesn’t end at graduation.

Our alumni network is integral to our DNA and we’re continually impressed by the amazing things they achieve. Whether they’re performing in venues throughout the world, inspiring a classroom of children, making an incredible difference in hospitals and care homes or utilising their skills in a different industry, their stories define who we are today and inspire where we could be tomorrow.

The Northern Cover Image

Discover our alumni here and read the latest edition of The Northern, our alumni magazine, here.

Incredible Support

From your initial enquiry through to enrolment and graduation, we’re happy to support you every step of the way.

Our Student Recruitment Team is available throughout the entire application process, providing advice and guidance on everything from Student Visas and English Language Requirements to fees and finance, living in Manchester and accommodation.

If you’d like to chat to them in person, they host informal drop-in sessions via Zoom every Tuesday and Friday. There’s no need to book, simply click on one of the Zoom links below and someone will be happy to help.

Tuesdays: 3 – 4pm (GMT)
Fridays: 9 – 10am (GMT)

Once your studies start, we strive to create an environment where you can learn not only how to make music with excellence, but how to live a fulfilled life as a musician and human being.

We have a fantastic team of wellbeing staff onsite, including a Lecturer in Musicians’ Health and Wellbeing, counsellors and mental health first aiders, and we’re proud to be part of the Greater Manchester Universities Student Mental Health Service, the country’s first dedicated centre for students with severe mental health problems.

Learn more about wellbeing at the RNCM here. And if English isn’t your first language, you can read about the support we provide and the requirements for your chosen course here.


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COVID-19 Update: Our venues have reopened to the public and we’re looking forward to welcoming you back this Autumn. Before attending an event at the RNCM, please read our Audience Protocol…