The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama (RWCMD) is the National Conservatoire of Wales, providing specialist practical and performance-based training, competing alongside an international peer group of Conservatoires and specialist arts colleges for the best and most gifted students globally and enabling students to enter and influence the world of music, theatre and related professions. In 2002, HRH The Queen granted the college 'Royal' status and is delighted to have HRH The Prince of Wales as Patron. RWCMD is a member of the National Council for Drama Training and Conservatoires UK. The College expanded its facilities in 2011 to include its new £22.5 million world-class performance and rehearsal spaces.
Faculties: BMus (Hons) Music, BMus (Hons) Jazz, BA (Hons) Acting, BA (Hons) Stage Management, BA (Hons) Theatre Design, Music Performance, Orchestral Performance, Historical Performance, Jazz, Repetiteurship, Acting for Stage, Screen and Radio, Musical Theatre, Opera Performance- Stage Management, Theatre Design, Scenic Arts & Construction for Stage and Screen, Event Production, Arts Management- Composition, Creative Audio & New Media, Creative Music Technology (Distance Learning), Orchestral Conducting, Brass Band Conducting, Choral Conducting, MPhil/PhD Music
Why Choose the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama?
The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama (RWCMD) is the National Conservatoire of Wales, providing specialist practical and performance-based training, competing alongside an international peer group of Conservatoires and specialist arts colleges for the best and most gifted students globally and enabling students to enter and influence the world of music, theatre and related professions.
In 2002, HRH The Queen granted the college 'Royal' status and is delighted to have HRH The Prince of Wales as Patron. RWCMD is a member of the National Council for Drama Training and Conservatoires UK. The College expanded its facilities in 2011 to include its new £22.5 million world-class performance and rehearsal spaces.
The College educates some of the most talented students from around the world, aiming to give them the technical and craft skills they’ll need to succeed at the top levels of the profession.
- The RWCMD is part of the Glamorgan Group and its awards are validated by the University of Glamorgan.
- The College has some of the finest performance facilities available in the conservatoire and drama school sector.
- Every year over 300 performances and events take place at RWCMD and other venues, featuring students and visiting artists. Musicians, actors, designers, stage managers and arts managers work together on many of these productions – just as they will after graduation.
- The College hosts many special guests: visitors to the college range from Hollywood star like Michael Sheen to the legendary music producer Quincy Jones.
- In 2009, RWCMD became the first All-Steinway Conservatoire in the UK. Steinway also funds the Steinway International Piano Scholarship.
- International Chairs in Music at the College have included Christian Lindburg – International Chair in Trombone; Rachel Podger (Baroque Violin); Simon Halsey (Choral Directing); Polina Leschenko (Piano) and many of the College’s drama productions are directed by established professional directors, such as James Grieve, Artistic Director of Nabokov and Associate Director at the Bush Theatre.
- Stage Management students are taught using a revolutionised tension and wire grid system in the roof space, and flying systems which open up lots of creative possibilities for theatre designers.
- The range of new buildings and facilities will allow for hands-on experience of running a venue, from marketing and fundraising to concert management.
- The Linbury Prize for Stage Design is a biennial competition for recently graduated stage designers. It gives them the opportunity to work with professional theatre companies and collaborate with writers, directors and technical teams at this crucial stage in their careers by winning the coveted prize. RWCMD has had many winners who have gone on to work for prestigious organisations such as the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC), the Royal Opera House, the Royal Ballet and the Welsh National Opera.
- 15 fully staged drama productions take place annually ranging from comedy to Shakespeare to musicals.
- A fully staged production of a major opera takes place each year, with a cast including students from the MA Opera Performance and other vocal studies programmes.
- RWCMD is preparing its contemporary music students to find new ways of reaching and communicating with audiences. With technology increasingly affecting all aspects of professional life, all composers need to be thoroughly conversant with scoring software, recording, sound sourcing, sound manipulation and so on.
- RWCMD has an established work placement scheme that benefits students, giving valuable experience and contacts for future careers.
- Postgraduate music students in particular are given performance practice training supported by seminars, tutorials and symposia, and will be trained in performance analysis and presentation.
The College is constantly pushing boundaries with innovative and exciting programmes of study tailored to the demands of contemporary arts and creative industries. The focus is always on the future and RWCMD takes immense pride in the world-class talent of its students.
- Each programme of study has different entry requirements and the College recognises a range of qualifications from around the world.
- Staff from the College regularly travel overseas to meet with partner institutions, attend fairs and to hold auditions.
- There are minimum English language requirements and applicants whose first language is not English will need to gain a recognised English language qualification. There are pre-sessional English language courses on offer.
- Partial tuition scholarships are available. Scholarships are awarded based on merit following auditions and International students will automatically be considered for a scholarship when they make their application.
Small is beautiful: A distinctive feature of RWCMD is that it is relatively small so staff get to know each student by name. It’s a vibrant and exciting place but at the same time homely, welcoming and intimate.
- Having fewer students means that everyone gets a high level of personal attention. The College’s Student Services team and Students’ Union work together to make sure students stay healthy, safe and happy during their time at RWCMD.
- Cardiff is a young capital with the buzz of a big city, but the friendliness and intimacy of a big town – it’s a small city with a big heart. Everywhere is within walking distance and students can get to student halls and the city centre within ten minutes.
The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama produces graduates who are articulate, resourceful and innovative in their art forms and offers the music and theatre industries a regular and highly skilled workforce.
- A guiding mantra at the College is ‘replicating the conditions of industry’. What better way to do this than forming effective working relationships with some of the country’s leading companies.
- At RWCMD dedicated teachers have a wealth of professional and industry experience and the College collaborates with a number of high-profile arts organisations, including the Welsh National Opera, the BBC, the National Orchestra of Wales and visiting artists and directors to ensure that the unique vocational nature of its training programmes reflects the current practices and conditions of the professional world.
- A unique initiative at RWCMD is helping students to develop the types of skills that will be essential in order to build a successful career after they graduate.
- In the performance industries today, business-savvy artists know how to find their market, promote themselves, and sustain their success. RWCMD gives students the entrepreneurial skills and practical experience to do just that.
Areas Of Study
Variety of Courses
RWCMD offers exceptional creative diversity - the College’s events calendar encompasses over 300 public performances every year including orchestral concerts, recitals, drama, opera and musical theatre. The creative diversity of the college ensures a stimulating environment and broad experience for students of all disciplines.
- Undergraduate programmes are offered in: BMus (Hons) Music, BMus (Hons) Jazz, BA (Hons) Acting, BA (Hons) Stage Management and BA (Hons) Theatre Design.
- Postgraduate programmes are offered in: Music Performance, Orchestral Performance, Historical Performance, Jazz; Repetiteurship, Acting for Stage, Screen and Radio, Musical Theatre, Opera Performance- Stage Management, Theatre Design, Scenic Arts & Construction for Stage and Screen, Event Production, Arts Management- Composition, Creative Audio & New Media, Creative Music Technology (Distance Learning), Orchestral Conducting, Brass Band Conducting, Choral Conducting, MPhil/PhD Music.
The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama (RWCMD) is set in a unique environment: in the grounds of Cardiff Castle, bordering one of the largest and most beautiful urban parks in the UK. The College is well known for its distinctly warm and welcoming character. With just 681 students there is a real sense of community and it is able to offer students an outstanding level of support.
RWCMD is located in Cardiff, the capital city of Wales which and has a population of just over 340,000. It is one of the most popular student destinations in the UK and each year more than 5,000 students from outside the UK choose to study there. Whilst offering everything you would expect from a thriving, cosmopolitan city, Cardiff is relatively compact and easy to get around in on foot. It also offers excellent value for money, with food, entertainment and accommodation costs significantly lower than in most major UK cities.
It has everything, from culture and heritage to sports venues and a great new shopping centre. Like London but smaller, and with everything a student would need. It’s a very safe place to live and affordable compared to other cities; London is only two hours away, with intercity direct trains running every hour.
Students entering the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama will be learning in a performing arts centre that will be one of the hubs of cultural life in the city. The iconic buildings stand at the entrance to the city centre alongside the college’s Anthony Hopkins Centre – an award-winning restoration of part of Cardiff Castle, which houses music practice rooms and two recital venues.
Cardiff is excited about its new cultural landmark and for students, it means bigger public audiences for their performances and facilities that will attract visits from more of the world’s leading professional artists and companies.