Funding Cuts Spur A Manchester Conservatoire to Launch Appeal

Aristotle: 'Music has a power of forming the character and should therefore be introduced into the education of the young.'
December 7, 2022

FUNDING cuts to music services in schools across the UK has spawned an initiative to help young musicians follow their dreams.

Manchester’s Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) is marking its 50th anniversary by launching an appeal dedicated to providing opportunities to under-18s.

The globally recognised conservatoire, has launched the Engage Appeal as part of a series of events spanning part of 2022 and 2023 and its ongoing programme to assist aspiring musicians from poorer backgrounds.

In figures produced by the independent Institute of Fiscal Studies, the last decade has witnessed a fall of 9-per-cent per pupil, the largest cut in 40 years.

RNCM Engage Appeal - Pathfinder

Rhiannon McKay-Smith, RNCM Director of Development says, “It is wonderful to be celebrating the achievements of the RNCM, but it’s even more important to use our platform to support the next generation of young musicians. 

“The reality is that music in schools was already suffering and with the added impact of Covid-19, this has created a tragic situation. Yet we all know the powerful force music has on society. This is why we must act now before it’s too late.

“Our appeal will support all of the RNCM’s brilliant work with under 18s, providing access to a programme of world-class tuition and tailored support.”

The appeal which has a target of raising £60,000 will support young people in a number of different ways including the ground-breaking Pathfinder programme for those facing financial, social and/or cultural barriers to their musical progression.

Subsidised lessons will also be provided through Junior RNCM’s weekly school for eight to 18-year-olds. Meanwhile, the Children’s Opera will offer musical opportunities for local schools to create and perform an opera at the RNCM.  A newly launched Young Artists Saturday Pop School, will also provide a space where young people can write, produce and perform new music together.

Professor Jennie Henley, RNCM Director of Programmes says, “To be part of a young musician's life is worth its weight in gold. The cruellest thing is to open a door for a young person and not give them the mechanism to go through. This is what we are here to do as a community at the RNCM and it is our responsibility to the future of the music profession that we do all that we can to support young people at this crucial time.”

RNCM Harp Player

RNCM’s public performance programme over the next nine months will include lots of opportunities for young people to participate and discover all the many different possibilities a world of music offers. During this time there will also be opportunities to support the RNCM50 Fund, from buying a ticket to a performance to attending the RNCM Fundraising Gala, which will take place in June 2023. 

To make a donation to the RNCM Engage Appeal please CLICK HERE

To find out more about RNCM50 Fund and how you can help support the future of music please CLICK HERE.

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Header Image: RNCM Engage Appeal - Children's Opera