Exam Music Information

The Library can help you with the copies you need for exams and recitals.

Here is some information to help you understand what to do if you are performing in a recital or examination.

Exam Music Information

When you perform in an end-of-year recital at the RNCM, you must provide copies of the music which you are performing to the exam panel as follows:


Undergraduate Years 1-3:

One copy of the music must be provided for the exam panel


Undergraduate Year 4 and all Postgraduates:

Two copies of the music must be provided for the exam panel

  • Copies can be either a solo part or the piano score
  • Copies should normally be in the same edition as the music you are using for performance. Where this is not the case, you must write the edition you are using in pencil on the panel copy and note any differences e.g. articulation marks/dynamics
  • Full orchestral scores are acceptable for concertos and ensemble works
  • Vocal scores for the panel can be in a different key but you must write the key in which you are performing in pencil on the copy

Photocopies of out-of-copyright works can be used as panel copies (see Library guide to Copyright)

Photocopies of works which are in copyright may ONLY be given to the panel if

1)      The publisher of the work is a signatory to the MPA Code of Fair Practice and you own, or have access to an original published copy. Please see the lists on the MPA website for details of included publishers.


2)      The publisher of the work has given specific permission for you to copy the music for your recital and you have documentary evidence of this.


The RNCM Library will assist you in obtaining music for the panel if you attend an exam music session.


Arrangements, transpositions and transcriptions of copyright works

The arrangement or transcription of a work involving no more than a change of key or register is permitted.

If you are performing a piece for which there are no published editions, you may provide a transcription for the panel. However, if the transcription is based on a published edition, even if for a different instrument or instrumental combination, copyright permission must be obtained before you make the transcription.

Any arrangements made for performance purposes must have the permission of the copyright holder. This is your responsibility and should be done BEFORE making the arrangement.

Ensemble pieces

Permission must be obtained from your Head of School to perform with an ensemble in your recital.

If you are given permission to play with an ensemble and the Library does not already hold a copy of the music, you will be expected to purchase or hire this yourself.


Page turns

For ease of performance due to a difficult page-turn one copy of the relevant section may be made.


College regulations with regards to illegal copies (See Student Handbook, Section 8, p.5)

Students who do not supply copies of their music for the panel or who attend an exam with unauthorized photocopies either for themselves to play from or for the panel will have their assessment terminated and receive a mark of 0%.


Further information:

Music Publishers Association http://mpaonline.org.uk

Student Handbook https://moodle.rncm.ac.uk/moodle/mod/page/view.php?id=29633


If you have any further queries about copyright please do not hesitate to ask a member of Library staff.

Exam Music Sessions

What the Library offers

During the period before your recital, the Library will run exam music sessions to ensure that you have the correct copies for performance and the exam panel.


What you need to do

  • Print out and fill in an exam music form (available on the Library information pages on Moodle)
  • Book a 20 minute session to see a member of Library staff on the Library information page of Moodle
  • Bring your completed form to the session
  • Bring the music you are performing to the session if possible.



If you do not book a session then the Library cannot assist you in getting all the required copies. For further information, including FAQs regarding copyright, please see the information on the Library page of Moodle.

Last modified: Tuesday, 13 February 2018, 3:41 PM