Performance at Bristol

Instrumental teaching

Our instrumental and vocal tutors are all professional musicians, and many of them teach in major British conservatoires. Details can be found on our staff page.

We pay for all performance students to have private lessons on their first study instrument/voice with our approved teachers. 

  • First year: 12 hours (20 credits);
  • Second year: 12 hours (20 credits); 
  • Final year: 14 hours (20 credits); 
  • Final year: 18 hours (40 credits).

All performance units culminate with a recital.

Masterclasses and workshops

We have a close relationship with several ensembles-in-residence, including Bristol Ensemble. Performers attend workshops and masterclasses on Friday afternoons given by members of these and other ensembles. Recent visitors have included Emma Kirkby, Ashley Wass, Martyn Brabbins, Rachel Podger, Mahan Estafani, Mary King and Jason Rebello.

Our active student community

All first-year students join the University Symphony Orchestra or University Symphony Chorus, and all students are encouraged to join these and the other department-led ensembles. There are numerous student-run ensembles, including jazz groups, a Baroque group, a chamber choir and an operatic society. In the summer, the Music students put on a summer music festival, with concerts in local bars, churches and in the Music Department.

Opportunities in the city of Bristol

Bristol is home to some of the best concert venues in the UK, including Bristol Beacon and St George's Bristol, and the Bristol Hippodrome, which each offer discounted tickets to students. Our students sometimes have the opportunity to play in these spaces, or take up internships and work experience posts.

Local churches and the cathedrals offer organ and choral scholarships, which our students are encouraged to audition for at the start of the year.

Some of our students are involved with the activities of Bristol Plays Music, the dynamic music education hub for Bristol, and their work with local schools and performers.

Many professional musicians live in and around the city and there is an abundance of choirs and orchestras, together with regular visits by top national and international orchestras and opera companies, including the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, the Philharmonia Orchestra and Welsh National Opera, which brings most of its new productions here.

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