Topic outline


    Welcome to the RNCM Chamber Music page. This page will provide you with program outlines for the Chamber Music (UG1, 2, 3, 4) and Small Ensemble (PG) modules, and up to date information on activities and recent events including Chamber Music Tuesday classes, competitions and masterclasses .


    If you have any queries regarding small ensembles or require further guidance for personal matters or injuries that may affect your group, please contact the Chamber Music Administrator or the relevant members of staff.

    Or alternatively, please visit Student Support 

    Below is the 2023/24 Chamber Music Handbook which includes information on all aspects of the chamber music modules for all year groups. 



  • Chamber Music Staff

  • Chamber Music Coaching

    Each year group is entitled to a differing number of coaching hours throughout the year. See the overview below:

    ·         Undergraduate 1st year: 10 hours of chamber coaching per year

    ·         Undergraduate 2nd year: 10 hours of chamber coaching per year

    ·         Undergraduate 3rd year: 10 hours of chamber coaching per year

    ·         Undergraduate 4th year: 10 hours of chamber coaching per year

    ·         Postgraduate: 15 hours of chamber coaching per year

    1st and 2nd year undergraduate students will have chamber coaching timetabled (These sessions are compulsory and can only be re-arrange if a valid absence requested has been submitted and approved). These will appear on your ASIMUT schedules.

    3rd, 4th year Undergraduate and Postgraduate students you will be responsible for signing up to your own chamber coaching sessions through ASIMUT. (You can find instructions on how to sign up to chamber coaching sessions on this page) You will need to demonstrate that you have attended the required number of coaching sessions in the Viva Voce element of your assessment.

    UG 1 & UG 2 Scheduled Chamber Coaching Weeks 2023/24:

    Undergraduate 1st and 2nd years your chamber coaching sessions will be scheduled into the below weeks. (Please make a note of these in your diary as you will be expected to attend 1 coaching within the below weeks.)

    • Week 6 (W/C 30 October)
    • Week 9 (W/C 20 November)
    • Week 10 (W/C 27 November)
    • Week 12 (W/C 11 December)
    • Week 13 (W/C 8 January) 
    • Week 14 (W/C 15 January) 
    • Week 18 (W/C 19 February)
    • Week 19 (W/C 26 February) 
    • Week 22 (W/C 18 March)
    • Week 23 (W/C 15 April)
    • Week 25 (W/C 29 April)

  • Tutor Specific Chamber Music Coaching Slots

  • Chamber Music Tuesday's

    This year the Chamber Music department will be running a series of lectures, workshops and masterclasses on selected Tuesday mornings. You will be tagged to the relevant classes on ASIMUT, and you will be expected to attend. Your attendance to these classes will be monitored and you will be asked about these classes in your chamber music assessment. If you haven't elected the chamber music module you are more than welcome to attend any of the class. Find a list of classes below.

    Tuesday 10 October 2023 (10am – 12pm)
    - Introductory session to Historical performance for woodwind players – Roger Hamilton

    Tuesday 17 October 2023 (10am – 12pm):
    - Introduction to Chamber Music –Simone Rebello
    - Souvenir de Florence project – Chris Hoyle
    - So your chamber group is doing well, what next? – Simone Rebello

    Tuesday 24 October 2023 (6pm – 8pm):
    - Beethoven sonata’s for cello and piano – Petr Prause & Jeremy Young
    - Jazz improvisation for all –Steve Berry
    - Voice and Brass Class – Lynne Dawson & Murray Greig

    Tuesday 14 November 2023 (6pm – 8pm):
    Beethoven Sonata’s for Cello and Piano Continued (Performance) – Petr Prause & Jeremy Young
    Play to the School Concert (SWBP) – Simone Rebello, Murray Greig, Kevin Gowland
    Brass Band Chamber Music Class – David Thornton
    Voice and Saxophone Class – Lynne Dawson & Rob Buckland

    Tuesday 21st November 2023 (10am – 12pm)
    - Practical session on Historical performance for woodwind players – Roger Hamilton

    Tuesday 28 November 2023 (10am – 12pm):
    So you’ve been asked to give an education concert… – Simone Rebello
    Piano duo performance class – Jeremy Young
    Ligeti Horn Trio Class – Callum Smart

    Tuesday 12 December 2023 (10am - 12pm):
    - Chamber music repertoire session, An exploration of cornerstones of chamber music repertoire – Kevin Gowland
    - Brass chamber music class – Murray Greig
    - Percussion chamber music class – Simone Rebello
    - Piano duo chamber music class – Kathy Stott
    - Historical Performance Chamber Music Class – Roger Hamilton

    Tuesday 9 January 2024 (10am – 12pm):
    New brass ensembles performance opportunity – Murray Greig
    New wind ensembles performance opportunity – Kevin Gowland
    New piano duos performance opportunity – Jeremy Young

    Tuesday 23 January 2024 (10am – 12pm):
    - Arrange it yourself, an opportunity to perform a work you have arranged yourself – Murray Greig & Rob Buckland
    - Arrange it yourself Percussion Class – Andrea Vogler
    Junior Fellow Performance Class – RNCM Junior Fellows in Chamber Music

    Tuesday 6 February 2024 (10am – 12pm):
    Historical Instruments, chamber music for brass – Murray Greig & Sue Addison
    Harmoniemusik – Roger Hamilton
    Piano Duo class – Kathy Stott

    Tuesday 27 February 2024 (6pm – 8pm):
    Play to the school concert (SWBP) – Simone Rebello, Murray Greig, Kevin Gowland
    Piano Trio Class – Jeremy Young

    Tuesday 5 March 2024 (10am – 12pm):
    - Johannes Meissl Masterclass
    - Introduction to Improvisation for all –
    Steve Berry

    Tuesday 12 March 2024 (10am – 12pm):
    - Historical Performance Class – Roger Hamilton
    - Brass Band Chamber Music Class – Dave Thornton

  • Chamber Music Assessment Information

    Chamber music assessments will take place in the following weeks. Please make a note of:

    ·         UG3, 4 & PG – Week 26 (W/C Monday 6th May)

    ·         UG 1, 2 – Week 29 (W/C Monday 27th May)

    ·         Deferred Assessment Week – Week 34 (W/C Monday 1st July)

    Below is the outline of what your Chamber Music assessment will involve.

    Undergraduate 1st & 2nd Years: (Ensembles 1 & 2)
    - A 10-minute live performance in Semester 2 (80%).
    - A 5-minute verbal Viva Voce where you will be asked to reflect on aspects of rehearsals, coaching, masterclasses, concert, competition, and lecture attendance. This will immediately follow your 10-minute live performance. (20%).
    - Online portfolio evidencing reflections on student-led or staff-directed ensemble activity including rehearsals, workshops, concerts and masterclasses, and research. (Pass/fail, must be passed to complete the module and gain credits)

    Undergraduate 3rd Year: (Chamber Music 1)
    - 20-minute live ensemble performance in Semester 2 (80%)
    - 5-minute verbal Viva Voce where you will be asked to reflect on aspects of rehearsals, coaching, masterclasses, concert, competition, and lecture attendance (20%)           

    Undergraduate 4th Year: (Chamber Music 2)
    - 25-minute live ensemble performance in Semester 2 (80%)
    - 5-minute verbal Viva Voce where you will be asked to reflect on aspects of rehearsals, coaching, masterclasses, concert, competition, and lecture attendance (20%)           

    Postgraduate Year: (Small Ensemble Performance)
    - 30-minute live ensemble performance in Semester 2 (75%)
    - 10-minute verbal Viva Voce where you will be asked to reflect on aspects of rehearsals, coaching, masterclasses, concert, competition, and lecture attendance (25%)           

    Further Information on your Online Portfolio (UG1 & 2 Only)
    You will post this on the Ensembles 1 or 2 Moodle page, and it will consist of a minimum of 10 posts. Full instructions on what to post and how to post it are on the Moodle page, but, in summary, it should represent evidence of your engagement with the musical life of the College and beyond. It might be photographs of concerts (or tickets for concerts) you have attended within or outside RNCM, either as audience or performer, masterclasses, rehearsals, or coaching sessions. At least 4 of these posts should be accompanied by a reflective comment of between 100 and 200 words. It is strongly encouraged that one of these reflections should be about your participation in an RNCM ensemble, and another about any ensemble activity in which you take part, but you have complete freedom of choice! The portfolio is checked for completeness, and marked as either pass or fail, without further feedback. It is much better to add posts gradually through the year rather than rush everything right at the end.

    The deadline for the submission of your online portfolio (UG1/2 only) is Tuesday 6th June 2024. Please contact Simon Parkin at if you have any questions about the portfolio part of your Ensembles assessment.

  • Postgraduate Assessment feedback

    Not available unless: You belong to PGT SEP
  • Chamber Music Prizes

    Each year the Chamber Music department host a variety of prizes. The winner of each prize goes through to compete in the Chris Rowland Chamber Music Prize of the Year Award. Information on each prize and how to enter can be found below
    Please submit your application forms via email to 
    Late entries will not be accepted.
    Orchestra & Ensembles projects and academic classes take priority over chamber music projects.   

  • Historical Performance

    As a student on the chamber music module, you will be given the opportunity to develop skills on historical instruments, benefitting from the expertise of our specialist tutors. You will be exposed to a wide variety of music, from Baroque cantatas and trio sonatas through to chamber music of the 18th and 19th centuries. Cross-school groups are encouraged to increase your experience of working with all instrumental and vocal disciplines. Repertoire is carefully chosen to match your specific interests and level of experience. If you are interested to know about this further, please contact:

    -       Roger Hamilton, Teaching Fellow in Historical Performance:

    -       Harvey Davies, Teaching Fellow in Historical Performance:

  • Chamber Music Performance Opportunities

    Within the Chamber Music module, we run a number of other performance opportunities alongside the masterclasses, prizes and Open Chamber Music classes already mentioned in this document. They include the following:

    Spotlight Concerts 
    This series takes place in the Carole Nash Recital Room or the RNCM Bar, and can be anything from a classical concert to a post-concert pop gig. Spotlight concerts are usually programmed on days that there are evening concerts. Pre-concert Spotlights usually start at 6.30pm (and last 30 minutes), and post-concert Spotlights start around 9.45pm (and potentially last up to 45 minutes). We aim to select Spotlights that we think would attract a similar audience to that of the main concert, encouraging them to attend both. We also programme a stand-alone Triple-Bill evening of Spotlights. It is your responsibility to organise everything from music hire to rehearsals, and you will need to submit a fully developed idea with the personnel already agreed. For more information on the Monday Recital Series and Spotlight Series contact Paul Massey,

    Thursday Lunchtime Concerts 
    The Thursday Lunchtime chamber concert series runs as the name suggests on a Thursday Lunchtime starting at 1:15pm. These concerts take place in the RNCM Concert Hall and are open to the general-public. Students for these concerts are chosen in collaboration between the Programming Team and the Heads of the Chamber Music department. If you have any questions regarding the Thursday Lunchtime concerts please contact the Programming Manager, Matt Witham -  

    External List
    Public performances are a key part of a musician's development. The RNCM co-ordinates many Professional Engagements each year, largely for soloists and ensembles/bands. Professional Engagements acts as an agency, liaising with senior academic staff in order to match the most suitable performers to a wide range of external professional engagements. The RNCM has long-standing links with numerous music clubs, choral societies, orchestras and event organisers both in the North West and further afield and co-ordinates regular recitals in Manchester's St Ann's and Emmanuel Churches and the Whitworth Art Gallery. Senior members of staff nominate musicians and small ensembles to be added to the external list. These are often the winners of the internal prizes and /or groups with good internal performance experience and adequate repertoire. If you have any questions regarding the external list please contact the Professional Engagement Manager, Amy Whitehouse -

  • External List

    RNCM musicians who have reached an exceptional level of performance are invited to undertake professional engagements throughout the UK. You can achieve this by following either of the steps below:  

    1. Win one of the Chamber Music Prizes. Winning a prize will automatically put your group on the RNCM External List.
    2. Request to be considered for the External List. You can request this by emailing Jack Grime

    A new group being considered will need to pass 3 stages before being accepted onto the External List. These stages will take place during RNCM performances e.g. during chamber music Tuesday classes, Spotlights, chamber music festival etc. You will need to request this in advance. You will be informed of the outcome of each stage soon after your performance. Once you have passed all 3 stages, you will be officially accepted onto the RNCM External List.