Popular Music – Audition Requirements

This is your chance to shine, so it’s good to remember that during this time we’ll be looking for candidates who demonstrate a high level of technical proficiency, musicality, confidence and communication and stylistic understanding through their performance.

Undergraduates and postgraduates are required to submit a recorded audition via Acceptd for 2021 entry. Once your application has been reviewed, you may be invited for an informal online interview if your Head of Programme requires further information to aid their decision.

BMus applicants are also required to complete an online test as part of the process. The multiple choice test isn’t pass or fail, but the results do tell us about your knowledge of music theory, general musicianship and contextual awareness.

Audition requirements are outlined below, but if you require further information, please email admissions@rncm.ac.uk or call 0161 907 5465.

Undergraduate

You should perform ONE piece of your own choice (excluding graded examination pieces) to an MP3 backing track and ONE piece from the following list:

Bass Guitar: Animal Spirits – Vulfpeck
Drum Kit: Stand Up –  The PB Underground
Electric Guitar: Beat It –  Michael Jackson
Keyboards: Rosanna – Toto
Voice (female): Get Here – Jessie J and Jools Holland
Voice (male): Human – Rag’n’Bone Man

Please note:

  • We recommend that candidates download (rather than stream) backing tracks and tracks for set pieces.
  • With advance notice, we can provide backing tracks for drum and vocal set pieces. For other instruments please refer to the studio track.
  • Candidates can opt to accompany themselves or perform their own versions of pieces, but auditioning in this way won’t impact the assessment.

Alongside this, the panel would like all applicants to answer the following questions so that they can get to know you a little more. These can be submitted as a separate video or included within your main audition recording.

  1. Why have you applied to the RNCM?
  2. What current projects are you working on?
  3. What do you consider to be your strengths as a musician?
  4. As a songwriter, what is your compositional process?
  5. Do you have a good working knowledge and understanding of recording and producing?
  6. Why should we offer you a place on the programme?

For advice on auditioning by recording, please click here.

Postgraduate

You should prepare THREE contrasting pieces/songs that demonstrate a range of technical and musical challenges appropriate to postgraduate-level study.

Please note:

  • We recommend that candidates download (rather than stream) backing tracks and tracks for set pieces.
  • Candidates can opt to accompany themselves or perform their own versions of pieces, but auditioning in this way won’t impact the assessment.

Alongside this, the panel would like all applicants to answer the following questions so that they can get to know you a little more. These can be submitted as a separate video or included within your main audition recording.

  1. Why have you applied to the RNCM?
  2. What current projects are you working on?
  3. What do you consider to be your strengths as a musician?
  4. As a songwriter, what is your compositional process?
  5. Do you have a good working knowledge and understanding of recording and producing?
  6. Why should we offer you a place on the programme?

For advice on auditioning by recording, please click here.