Performance plays a central role in Cambridge; in fact, Music students can study performance in all three years of the Music Tripos. Tuition in the principal instrument (including voice) is normally arranged through students’ individual colleges; in addition, Margaret Faultless, the Music Faculty’s Director of Performance, arranges masterclasses and workshops, some of which are hosted by the Cambridge Centre for Musical Performance Studies. Students are also encouraged to take part in ensembles and other performance activities within the University, Faculty, colleges and/or the wider community.
In the first year, all Music students have the option of giving a recital (but, as with assessed performance at other levels, this is not obligatory). In the second year, we run a course on Performance Studies. This allows students to focus on historical performance, analysis and performance, and the psychology of performance. The course aims to give students a broader awareness of the multi-faceted components of the performer’s art and the wide range of issues underpinning it. Students electing this course can choose to perform a recital or write an assessed essay. In the third year, Music students can opt to give a full recital. Financial support for vocal / instrumental lessons increases from roughly six hours of tuition in the first year to ten hours in the final year; this is equivalent to £700 for finalists. Further support may be available from individual colleges.