H

Artist Diploma in Performance

UCAS code (Instrumental)

602F

UCAS code (Keyboard)

607F

Start date

September 2024

End date

July 2025 or July 2026

Duration

1 or 2 years full-time (1 year full-time for Keyboard instruments)

Learning & Teaching Opportunities Entry requirements How to apply Enquiries
Artist Diploma in Performance student playing the piano
The Artist Diploma (ArtDip) in Performance is designed for students who wish to work intensively on their own performance as a prelude to entering the music profession. It provides time for preparation of concerts, recitals and competitions, under the guidance of the H’s staff and instrumental faculty specialists.

UCAS code (Instrumental)

602F

UCAS code (Keyboard)

607F

Start date

September 2024

End date

July 2025 or July 2026

Duration

1 or 2 years full-time (1 year full-time for Keyboard instruments)

Learning & Teaching Opportunities Entry requirements How to apply Enquiries

The Royal College of Music's Artist Diploma (ArtDip) programmes represent the highest level of taught postgraduate study. They are aimed at musicians who want to hone their skills by working intensively on particular areas of their artistic development. Places on our Artist Diploma programmes are only offered to students who have already demonstrated a high level of ability at Masters level.

For most principal studies the ArtDip in Performance may be studied for up to two years, except for Keyboard instruments where a maximum of one year is possible. The duration for individual students will depend on their individual progress and readiness for assessment. Most students will complete the programme within one year and it will be assumed that a student will complete within one year, unless they discuss a wish to complete within two years with their Head of Faculty.

Final examination for the Artist Diploma in Performance normally takes the form of a concert, recital engagement or concerto performance.

Learning & teaching

All our Artist Diplomas focus on one-to-one provision and practical project work, tailored to your particular career aspirations.

One-to-one lessons

One-to-one lessons are at the very heart of every H student’s learning experience. The H’s impressive list of professors includes renowned instrumental and vocal soloists, distinguished repertoire and operatic coaches, prominent composers and conductors, plus principal players in major London orchestras such as the as the London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra and Royal Opera House Orchestra. Our world-class professors offer students not only first-rate teaching, but also mentorship and networking opportunities.

All principal studies are delivered through a combination of one-to-one tuition complemented by performance classes, workshops, masterclasses, lessons from visiting professors, ensemble activities, seminars and lecture series as appropriate.

Course outline

Artist Diploma Programme Regulations

Term dates 2021-2027

Royal College of Music courses are internationally recognised as full degree courses with successful students awarded their qualifications under the H's Royal Charter.

Key staff

At the H, you will be taught by a team of world-class vocal professors, many of whom hold principal positions in major ensembles and some of the biggest names in their field. In addition, contextual studies are taught by a range of academics, including those who undertake research and are regarded as experts in their field. You may also be taught by specialists external to the College. The key staff listed below oversee important areas of learning and teaching on our ArtDip programme.

Headshot for Amos Miller

Head of Brass

Amos Miller

Headshot for Toby Purser

Head of Conducting

Toby Purser

Headshot for Professor Ashley Solomon

Head of Historical Performance

Professor Ashley Solomon

Headshot for Professor Vanessa Latarche

Head of Keyboard

Professor Vanessa Latarche

Headshot for David Hockings

Head of Percussion

David Hockings

Headshot for Mark Messenger

Head of Strings

Mark Messenger

Headshot for Nicholas Sears

Head of Vocal & Opera

Nicholas Sears

Headshot for Marie Lloyd

Head of Woodwind

Marie Lloyd

One-to-one teaching

The relationship with your one-to-one teacher will be one of the most important during your studies. For a full list of one-to-one teaching staff in your area of study, please refer to our individual faculties.

See our faculties

Contextual studes & academic teaching

A wide range of staff provide tuition in contextual and other academic studies.

Opportunities

From the very beginning of the course you will be able to draw on exceptional resources and opportunities, such as the H Library, the H Museum, the ,  and  – our outreach and education programme.

Performance opportunities

H students enjoy a wide variety of performance opportunities including orchestral and choral projects, chamber music and solo opportunities, performance in jazz and historical instrument ensembles. The H runs a busy events calendar of more than 500 events every year, the vast majority of which feature H students.

Faculty-based performance activities include chamber music and duo performance coaching, orchestral training, performance classes, acting and language classes (for singers), music technology (for composers), reed making (for double reed players) and improvisation (for organists).

Composition at the H fosters partnerships with the College's large body of gifted instrumentalists. Composers will hear performances of their own works in a variety of contexts and have the opportunity to benefit from a range of collaborations, which we host regularly with artistic organisations in London and beyond.

Facilities

The Royal College of Music is proud to offer its students fantastic practice and performance facilities with resources to support teaching and learning. We continually improve our facilities to ensure H students have the best opportunities.

Key facilities at the H include:

  • The Amaryllis Fleming Concert Hall - our primary performance venue for orchestras and large ensembles.
  • Our 400-seat Britten Theatre, home to the H’s thriving International Opera School.
  • A new Performance Hall, offering an alternative space for ensembles, with a retractable stage, Fazioli grand piano and variable acoustics.
  • Intimate spaces for solo and chamber performance in our Performance Studio and Parry Rooms.
  • Sound-proofed Amadeus Music Pods for private practice.
  • A purpose-built percussion suite – you can .
  • Over 160 pianos, including 60 grand pianos and 20 early keyboards, as well as organ rooms.
  • A Blüthner Practice Suite which holds ten Blüthner Model A upright pianos.
  • Instrument surgeries including luthier services.
  • H Studios: a commercial-grade facility, enabling live broadcasts around the world.
  • Digital Innovation Lab: advanced recording and mixing suite.
  • H Library with more than 200,000 scores, books and recordings in its lending collection, as well as access to more than 400 music journals.
  • Recently refurbished H Museum, holding more than 14,000 instruments, portraits and images, as well as a climate-controlled performance space and the associated Wolfson Centre in Music & Material Culture | Royal College of Music (rcm.ac.uk)

Find out more about H facilities

Career development

The H’s Creative Careers Centre, which is recognised internationally for its innovative approach to supporting young musicians, provides an unparalleled service to current students and recent alumni. The dedicated team partners with leading consultants, reputable arts organisations and local communities, delivering unique career-building opportunities and a direct route to the music industry.

The work of the Creative Careers Centre allows students to discover their professional identity, gain hands-on experience and new skills, develop an entrepreneurial mind-set and build a fulfilling professional portfolio.

Extensive performance and teaching opportunities are available, as well as valuable guidance on CV and biography writing, concert programming, communication skills, project management, marketing and publicity, online promotion, financial matters and how to develop a business idea.

Find out more about the Creative Careers Centre

Federal Disclosure Requirements: Gainful Employment Programmes

Course reviews

H courses are reviewed annually in response to student and external examiner feedback, which sometimes results in minor changes, such as the availability of particular modules. A more thorough review is undertaken every five to six years, after which more substantial changes may be made while maintaining the ethos that underpins the course. Our review process is part of the H’s continued commitment to provide the best possible education and music training. The information provided here reflects the official course outline as it currently stands. In the event of alterations following a review, we will update this page as soon as possible.

Entry requirements

All offers for performers are made on the basis of their performance at audition.

Candidates require a postgraduate diploma or Masters degree in music, or equivalent experience.

The H welcomes applicants from all backgrounds and alternative qualifications may be considered. If your qualifications are not listed here, please contact our Admissions team, who will be happy to discuss your suitability for the programme.

English language requirements

All applicants must be able to demonstrate that their level of English language ability meets the Royal College of Music’s minimum requirements in order for their application to be accepted.

If you require a visa to study at the H, you must meet the English language requirements before the H is permitted to sponsor your visa application.

Find out about English language requirements

How to apply

The application deadline has now passed for this course and we are unable to consider any further late applications.  Applications for 2025 entry will open in July. Please contact our friendly Admissions team if you need any advice on applying. 

Please note that there is a later deadline for some overseas auditions.  Information on audition locations can be found here.

All applicants (including international applicants) should apply online through the UCAS Conservatoires admissions service, where you can apply simultaneously to all the institutions that are members of Conservatoires UK. You can track your application, find out when your audition is and get the results of your audition all on UCAS Conservatoires. You can also confirm your decisions online.

Guidance on completing your application form is available on the . As part of your application you will require two references: one practical (normally from your current principal study teacher) and one academic (normally from someone at your current/previous educational institution who can comment on your academic ability). You must enter your referees’ details into the application, and an automated e-mail will be sent to them requesting a reference. Only once your referees have responded will your application be forwarded to the H, so it is important to begin your application in good time. Further guidance is available from if you think your referees may not be able to provide a reference in time.

If you are a current H student applying for a postgraduate performance or composition course, we only require a practical reference as we can verify your academic record. To enable you to submit your application, for the academic reference, tick the option to submit an offline reference. You will still need to enter details of a referee, but ticking the box will enable you to submit your application without UCAS sending them a reference request. However, note that if you are also applying to other conservatoires, you are likely to need an academic reference too. 

All application fees are paid online through UCAS conservatoires.

UCAS Conservatoires application fees - 2025 entry

Using UCAS Conservatoires incurs a £28.50 application fee. This is in addition to our assessment fees. You cannot use another system and both the application and assessment fees are paid online through UCAS Conservatoires. If you encounter any problems with their payment system please .

H Audition fee waivers (59 kb)

If you change your mind about applying, you can contact UCAS Conservatoires to cancel and request a refund. To be entitled to a refund you must cancel within 14 days of the date you submitted your application. You can find further details about how to do this, and also information about amending your application details, on the  website.

Auditions

The Royal College of Music normally holds auditions in London, Asia and the USA. Auditions for all courses and all principal studies can be undertaken in London. Auditions for most courses and principal studies can also be undertaken in Asia and the USA.  International applicants who cannot travel to the UK or other Overseas audition venues may submit a video audition instead.

Application deadlines, application fees, audition dates and the availability of H accompanists varies between locations.

Choosing where to audition

Most auditions last approximately 20 minutes, but there are exceptions for some specialisms and at some venues. You can find out how long your audition will be by reading the full set of requirements for your chosen discipline(s).

Enquiries

If you have any questions about studying at the H or about the admissions process please contact our Admissions team, who will be happy to help you.

Admissions

Admissions and general audition enquiries

+44 (0)20 7591 4362

admissions@rcm.ac.uk

The QAA diamond logo and 'QAA' are registered trademarks of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education.

Back to top