"There are several individual features about the training given at the London College of Music and its many centres.
Perhaps the most striking of these is the system of grading adopted in its requirements for examinations. Instead of setting one or two compulsory pieces for each certificate, six or seven are given, from which the candidate may select the required number.
Another feature is that there is a double system of day and evening lessons, the latter being at reduced fees. In Great Britain examinations are held once a term, instead of once a year. The college, though called the London College, is represented all over the world, and has its Australian headquarters at 45, Paling's Buildings, Sydney.
The very moderate fees charged, both for teaching and for examinations, bring the training within the reach of everybody, and the system of cheap evening lessons extends its benefits to hundreds of busy people who have little time or money to expend on cultivating their musical talent. And there is absolutely no age or other limit, either for classes, private lessons, or examinations.
Besides the subjects which are selected by students as single studies, to which they may add as they please, there are several special courses, which are of great interest.
I. Course for Teachers. This course aims at training a student as a capable teacher of music, especially in piano, violin, or singing. It lasts for two years, at an inclusive fee. The course is divided into two branches :
(a) General. The rudiments of music ; training the ear ; naming intervals, melodies, and chords, after hearing them played ; harmony, names and classifications of chords ; analysis of the construction of pieces.
(b)Special. Pianoforte, or violin, or singing.
II. Professional Training for Pianists, Vocalists, and Violinists. This course combines the various branches of music necessary for the complete equipment of a professional student. All the lessons and lectures are given by well-known professors, and the cost is quite moderate. The terms are five guineas a term, for principal study and classes in other correlative subjects, and for another guinea a second principal study may be added.
A system of lessons by correspondence has been found very successful. The subjects which can be taught in this way are, of course, theoretical, not practical, but they include all that is absolutely essential to a proper knowledge of music.
Evening classes are held at very low fees, varying from 7s. 6d. a term to £1 1s. These classes are so arranged as to cover a very wide ground. They include harmony, counterpoint, form and analysis, rudiments, sight-singing, orechestra, choir, elocution, and string quartet or pianoforte trio. Classes of three each are held in the evenings for piano, singing, violin, etc.
The opera class is 12s. 6d. a term, or a guinea and a half for three terms, including the costume for any performance in which the student takes part.
For twelve private lessons in principal musical subjects the fees are two guineas and three guineas, while longer lessons may be had by day for an extra guinea. The fees for the harp are three and a half guineas per term, including the use of the instrument for lessons.
Special preparation is given for degrees and other musical distinctions.
Holiday courses in instrumental instruction and singing, as well as general lessons, are given during the Easter, August, and Christmas vacations. The original idea of these courses was the benefit of provincial teachers, but it has been found that they are useful to many who have no spare time except in the holidays.
There is a special class for conductors ; also a school for organists.
Students taking private lessons are given a report signed by their professor at the end of each term. Three such reports qualify for a free examination by the principal, and a certificate is then given.
There are nine scholarships in various subjects ; they are free and open to residents in the United Kingdom, without any age or sex limit. The scholarships give free tuition for two years at the college. There are also various exhibitions.
Examinations for certificates are held in 450 centres all over the world. The fees range from 8s. 6d. to £1 7s. 6d. for practical subjects, or 5s. to 10s. 6d. for theoretical.
The higher examinations for diplomas are held in London and at forty provincial centres twice a year ; the fees range from two to five guineas, according to the grade of the diploma in question.
Details of the very comprehensive scheme adopted by the college may be had from the secretary of the London College of Music, Great Marlborough Street.