No. 2.  The Royal Academy Of Music

By Pearl Adam

The Foundation of the Academy - The Encouragement Given by Royalty - How to Join - Curriculum and Facilities Offered - Fees, Scholarships, and Prizes - The Fund to Assist Poor Students

"The Royal Academy of Music is the oldest of any of the institutions founded with the idea of encouraging the study of music in the United Kingdom by general instruction. It was owing to the exertions of John Fenn, eleventh Earl of Westmorland, that this royal and national institution was founded in 1822.

In the following year it was opened under the direct patronage of George IV., who showed his interest in a tangible manner by an annual donation of 100 guineas. One of his last official acts was to sign the charter. William IV. commanded that a quarter of the proceeds of the Handel Festival in Westminster Abbey should be given to the academy. This was done, and the sum amounted to 2,250. Queen Victoria also was a patron, and she and the Prince Consort were present at a concert given for the benefit of the school in 1858. King Edward and Queen Alexandra, when Prince and Princess of Wales, attended in person the distribution of prizes in 1897; and shortly after his accession King George V. became, in his turn, the patron of the institution.

With such a record of Royal approval it is no wonder that the academy has grown. It began in one small house in Tenterden Street, then it took a second house, then a third; while at the present time (1910) a palatial building is being erected in Marylebone Road as a new home for the academy.

Progress

Made by the

Academy

Over 6,000 students, it is e sti-mated,have been trained in the academy. In 1822 the number admitted was 20, in 1910 it is usually over 500; and the list of those who have distinguished themselves subsequent to their Academy training is long and brilliant. The list of women, headed alphabetically by Miss Lena Ashwell, includes many names well known on the stage and platform.

Subscribers to the institution may attend all the concerts, meetings, and lectures, etc., while fellows, associates, and honorary members have some of the same privileges. The subscribers are divided into four classes, members of each class enjoying privileges in proportion to the amount they pay. For instance, contributors of 100 guineas in one payment, or ten guineas annually, have the privilege of being present at, and of introducing three persons to, all the public concerts and distributions of prizes of the institution, and the fortnightly meetings, orchestral and choral practices, and lectures held at the academy so far as space and other circumstances permit. The second class, to which belong contributors of fifty guineas in one payment or five guineas annually, enjoy the same advantages as the members of the first class, except that the number of persons they may introduce is limited to two. The third class pays twenty-five guineas in one payment or three guineas annually, and the fourth class t w e 1 v e guineas in one payment or one guinea annually. Members of these two classes have free access to all the meetings, etc., men-t i o n e d above, but are only permitted to in-t rod u c e one person on such occasions.

The new home of the Royal Academy of Music in Marylebone Read

The new home of the Royal Academy of Music in Marylebone Read

The academy is governed by a president, four vice-presidents, a board of directors, a committee of management, a chairman, and a treasurer, acting under whom are a house committee, and the principal and executive officials. There are fifty-seven scholarships and exhibitions in operation, most of them tenable for three years, and obtainable by competition only." In addition, there are thirtv-five prizes.

Full particulars of these scholarships are given in the extensive prospectus of the academv. The prizes mostly consist of medals,'purses of five to twelve guineas, and musical instruments.

The procedure of joining the academy is much the same as that for the Royal College of Music. Before entering, the applicant is examined in order to judge of his or her ability and proficiency. The fee for this examination is a guinea, and this is considered as part of the entrance fee of five guineas. Students are not admitted for a shorter period than three terms, but to win the highest awards of the academy they must stay for at least three years. There is no age limit.

The Course Of Training:

The subjects taught in the academy include every kind of musical training, both theoretical and practical, and there are special branches for military music and all orchestral instruments. Everything necessary for the stage is also taught, and languages and fencing are included in the curriculum.

The ordinary course consists of a principal study (two lessons weekly of thirty minutes each, and the privilege of being present at other lectures); a second study (one lesson of an hour weekly); elements of music, harmony, and counterpoint; composition, sight singing, diction or choir training (all these a weekly class of an hour); orchestral practice (five hours a week); ensemble playing (six hours a week); and occasional lectures.

For the convenience of those living in the country, a list of local representatives can be obtained from the academy, and from these full information can be obtained. A list of suitable boarding-houses for students will also be sent. Luncheons and teas are provided at the academy, and in the new building there will be accommodation for practice. Every year an examination of students is held, on which medals and certificates are awarded; and a report on the progress of each student is made to the parents and guardians annually.

Every fortnight a concert is held, and twice in every term public ones are given in some London hall. Scholarship holders and exhibitioners are obliged to perform at these concerts when called upon by the principal.

Various distinctions are given by the academy, which give the successful student the right of putting coveted letters after his or her name.

Another examination held by the academy is for those who are or desire to become teachers of voice culture and class singing for children. The fee for this is three guineas, and a preparation is given in the shape of courses of lectures, which are open to students and non-students on payment of a small fee.

The New Premises

The new building is being built at a cost of over 51,000. Lord Strathcona laid the foundation stone on July 14th, 1910, and read a letter of good wishes from King George, in which his Majesty accepted the office of patron.

The building is in high-roofed, Georgian style, and the original contract provided only eleven months for completion. It stands on the site of the well-known girls, orphan school. The problem of deadening sound has been successfully combated, and plenty of space, light, and air are features of the new building. In addition to all the arrangements described above there is a flourishing fund established for the purpose of assisting necessitous talented and deserving students, whose circumstances often compel them to leave the academy when they are at "the best stage for deriving the utmost benefit from the tuition there."

Fees

The fees payable by ordinary students are:

s.

d.

For the entrance examination.....................................

1

1

0

Balance of entrance fee on becoming a student........

4

4

0

Tuition fees, for ordinary curriculum, per term.....................................................

11

11

0

Tuition fees for the curriculum set forth in the prospectus (wind instruments)....................................................

7

7

0

Optional Subjects

Additional principal study:

One lesson per week (30 minutes)........................

4

4

0

Two lessons per week (30 minutes each)..................................................

7

7

0

Additional second study, one lesson per week............................................................

2

2

0

Operatic class (ordinary students)

1

11

6

,, ,, (students who discontinue all other subjects)...................................................

3

3

0

Dramatic class (ordinary students).............................

2

2

0

,, ,, (students who discontinue all other subjects)...................................................

3

3

0

Diction............

1

1

0

Elocution....................................................................

1

1

0

Accompaniment........

1

1

0

Dancing............

1

1

0

Stage dancing..........

1

1

0

Deportment...............................................................

0

5

0

Fencing (per course of twelve lessons)..........

2

2

0

Italian.........................................................................

1

1

0

French.......................................................................

1

1

0

German......................................................................

1

1

0