Supporting RNCM students through this difficult time

Since closing our doors last week, I have been overwhelmed by messages of solidarity and encouragement from our wonderful community all over the world. So many of you who hold the RNCM dear have been getting in touch with words of support as we adapt, however temporarily, to this new way of life. I am truly humbled.

A few of you have asked how you can help us financially during this unprecedented time, and I am extremely grateful to know that, despite the personal difficulties you may be facing, the work of our incredible staff and students remains close to your hearts.

The College relies heavily on income from our box office and catering facilities, and without the support of our regular audience over the coming weeks and months we undoubtedly face challenging times. More importantly, the closure of live music venues, theatres, cafes, bars and restaurants across the UK means that our students are quickly seeing their vital income disappear.

They need our help more than ever and it is imperative that we support them as much as possible at this time. This is why we are now requesting contributions to our Student Hardship Fund. This crucial pot is a safety net for our young musicians who, through no fault of their own, find themselves facing financial strain. If you are in a position to support us, however large or small, it will be much appreciated. Donations can be made online, where you will also find lots more information about how your money will help.

While we continue to build our online presence, bringing you as much music as we can via our digital channels, we know that many of you will have bought tickets to cancelled events and performances at the College. Please rest assured that we have not forgotten about you. Our box office is finalising its remote set-up and will soon be in a position to refund ticket holders. If you were due to attend the RNCM Big Band concert or a performance of RNCM Opera’s Mansfield Park this week, may I ask you to consider – if you are in a position to do so – converting your ticket into a donation; I guarantee that all monies raised will directly benefit RNCM students in need.

In the meantime, I look forward to staying in touch with you in the virtual world and to discovering together the evermore creative ways that our staff, students and alumni are striving to Keep Music Playing.

Professor Linda Merrick