BMus Music (Performance) (2017 entry)
This Information is for 2017 entry only – to see the information for 2017 entry please go to the main Programme page
In this Section:
This exciting four-year degree allows you to specialise in performance and spend your third year studying in a conservatoire, music college or university abroad.
You’ll focus on solo and ensemble performance, but you’ll also study music from a variety of critical approaches. You can pursue your own interests by choosing optional modules, exploring areas such as the psychology of music, aesthetics, composition, notation and editing or music technology.
From the Russian nationalist school to Duke Ellington, baroque to pop, you’ll be able to study music from different cultures and periods. At the same time, you’ll develop your practice as a creative and individual performer, enhanced by your experience at one of a range of institutions in Europe or elsewhere in the world.
You’ll develop a wide range of experience and valuable skills in a vibrant, diverse city with an exciting musical and cultural scene.
At the heart of the School of Music is the Clothworkers Centenary Concert Hall, a beautiful performance space which hosts a large and varied programme of concerts in term time. The entire concert programme is free to students.
The School of Music has its own purpose-built building complete with rehearsal, performance and practice spaces, a lab for studying the psychology of music and four lecture theatres. There are also studios for sound recording, software development and computer music composition – we have a wide range of professional recording equipment and up-to-date music software to help you with your studies. In addition, our instrument collection includes a specially commissioned gamelan, historic and modern keyboard instruments and a large selection of orchestral and world percussion.
Music at Leeds
Leeds offers a fantastic variety of opportunities to get involved with music and performance that go far beyond the School of Music ensembles. You can also be involved in extra-curricular activities through the student union, or by creating your own ensembles or bands.
Leeds University Union Music Society (LUUMS) is one of the Union's largest societies and boasts eight ensembles, including orchestras, choruses, brass and wind bands; each one gives regular concerts and some go on tour. The campus hosts a diverse range of other musical societies, including Gospel Choir, Clothworkers Consort of Leeds, Opera Society, Music Theatre, Band Soc, Big Band, Electronic Music and DJ Societies. Find out more about Leeds University Union Clubs and Societies.
You could also get involved in cultural activities in the Leeds area, and perform in the city’s many venues such as clubs, pubs, churches, or the Town Hall.
Read more about city life in Leeds.
Throughout the programme, you’ll benefit from individual tuition from a specialist teacher in your instrumental/vocal lessons, and coaching in ensemble performance. In your first year you’ll study core modules that introduce you to theoretical, historical and social aspects of music; you can also choose from optional modules introducing you to composition, music technology or psychology, as well as discovery modules.
In your second year, half your time will be spent studying solo and ensemble performance which will prepare you for the following year, when you’ll study in a conservatoire, music college or university abroad. You’ll also develop in other areas, choosing from topics reflecting the diverse research interests of our tutors. In addition, you’ll choose options including notation and editing, analysis, aesthetics and criticism, music technology, composition and music psychology.
The year abroad can focus almost exclusively on intensive performance study. However, if you’re studying in English you may also choose some academic modules, and if you’re in Europe, you can improve your language skills.
When you return to Leeds for your final year, you’ll focus on specialist solo performance to prepare for a recital, and you’ll demonstrate the skills you’ve acquired when you produce a dissertation on a topic of your choice. It is possible to continue to choose from specialist studies, and you will have the chance to perform in the School’s ensembles.
Details of typical modules/components for this course will be published on May 1st. These may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
Broadening your academic horizons
At Leeds we want you to benefit from the depth and breadth of the University's expertise, to prepare you for success in an ever-changing and challenging world. This course gives you the opportunity to broaden your learning by studying discovery modules. Find out more on the Broadening webpages.
Learning and teaching
Performance modules will include individual tuition, ensemble rehearsals, and performance classes, where you will have the expertise of a piano accompanist for rehearsal and performances, if you need one. You’ll have access to our expert instrumental and vocal teachers, but could choose to study with an alternative teacher off-campus if you wish.
Depending on the modules you choose, other teaching and learning methods are likely to include lectures, seminars and tutorials, as well as online learning tasks, studio time for composition, and lab work in music psychology. Independent study is also an important part of the degree, whether in practice and rehearsal or research and reading, since this is where you will develop your analytical and research skills. Our experienced technicians and tutors are on hand to help if you need them.
You’ll be assigned a personal tutor who will meet with you individually at least twice a year, and tutorial support for your other modules is always available on request. All staff have office hours where you can drop in and ask for help if you need it. There is extensive support for students offered through the library's skills programme.
We use different types of assessment, depending on the modules you choose. Performances are a vital element of your assessment, but we also use written and listening exams and essays, project work, composition portfolios, presentations, concert reviews and recordings.
This degree will allow you to develop a wide range of subject knowledge and skills, focussing on performance. You’ll gain a solid background in academic study, and a wide range of transferable skills, which will enable you to pursue various career pathways. You’ll be a good communicator who is able to collaborate and work well in a team, but you’ll also be confident working independently. You’ll have the chance to develop analytical, research and organisational skills. The year abroad is a great opportunity to test your independence and will give you confidence in approaching new situations, as well as the chance to really concentrate on your performing activity.
The BMus degree is an excellent preparation for a career in performance, including further study (our graduates regularly attain places at music colleges in the UK or abroad), and many of our students are working in the profession, including singers with Opera North, string quartet and band members, conductors, arrangers and orchestral musicians.
However, because of the rigorous academic requirements of the degree, it’s possible to move into careers in areas such as law, business, education and management. One of our BMus tenor voice graduates is practising property law in Leeds at the moment!
We run a series of careers events every year in collaboration with the University Careers Centre to help you explore your options.
Read our Graduate profiles
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. Thats one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
If you progress successfully, and your application to an institution abroad is successful, you’ll spend the third year of this degree studying in a conservatoire/music college/university at one of our partner institutions outside the UK.
It’s a great opportunity to develop your performance skills, explore another culture and develop personal skills that will stay with you for life. It will also look great on your CV, whether or not you choose to pursue a performance career after graduation.
Language classes are available during your first two years to prepare you to study in a non-English speaking country, though you may study in English if you prefer. We have a range of exchange programmes with conservatoires and music colleges in the Czech Republic, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, and other worldwide destinations.