Last Updated: 06/09/22
1. What is University Music?
University Music is the professionally managed music-making function at the University of Birmingham. The musical equivalent of UBSport – University Music provides over 1300 positions in music groups across the academic year, and co-ordinates student and professional concerts on campus, as well as high profile events. University Music is open to students, staff, and the local community, and encompasses a variety of student performance groups (including the Music Society and the Collective for Early Music Performance and Research).
The Music Society is a key part of the University Music scene and offers a platform for students to get involved in running groups and promoting events.
2. Why do I need to join University Music and the Music Society?
In order to perform in one of the ensembles affiliated with University Music and the Music Society you must become a member. For Music Society specific ensembles, you must pay an annual membership fee which supports the running of the society – this enables you to perform in a Society group, to attend and vote at the Society AGM, and purchase reduced rate tickets for various social events across the year.
3. How do I join?
To join please follow the Get Involved > Join Us page on the Music Society website.
4. Can I become a Music Society committee member?
Ordinarily a new committee is voted in at the AGM at the end of each autumn term for the upcoming calendar year. For details on roles and how to apply visit www.uobmusicsociety.org.uk/team
5. Can I join an ensemble at any time of the year?
If you would like to join an auditioned ensemble, auditions will be held in Week 1 of Semester 1 only. To sign up for an audition you should email email@example.com . In order to maintain high standards, students can only join auditioned ensembles following a successful audition in the autumn term and not at later points in the year.
For un-auditioned ensembles, students can sign-up and join during the autumn and spring terms – though you are encouraged to sign up as soon as possible as some ensembles are allocated on a first come, first served basis.
6. Where can I practice?
Active members of University Music ensembles can apply to practice in the University Music Hub in Frankland – though priority must be given to Music students. To request access to these facilities, members must complete a request form following audition week via the University Music Office in Frnakland. Non-Music students cannot book rooms in advance. Rooms are available for one hour at a time.
7. Are there any rooms with pianos?
A variety of practice rooms in the University Music Hub are equipped with pianos and are available to use. However, due to the large number of music students, access to pianos is only available to pianists who are active members of a University Music ensemble (this includes chamber groups and jazz small bands). If you do not perform in an ensemble then unfortunately we are unable to give access and you are encouraged to enquire with the University Chaplaincy or Guild of Students whom also have rooms with pianos.
8. How can I organise lessons?
We are unable to provide lessons for non-music students or students who have not been awarded a music scholarship. We advise that students seek private tuition through Services for Education's Music School (www.sfemusic.co.uk) (or seek advice through the University Music and Concerts team) – though we accept no responsibility for the subsequent tuition. Private lessons are not permitted to take place on campus.
9. Where can I store my instrument?
Students who perform in a University Music ensemble can request access to a Music Instrument Store to store their instrument. Music students and scholars are given automatic access. To request access to these facilities, members must complete a request form via the University Music Office in Frankland. Subject to instrument, you will be granted access to either a room in Bramall, or a room in the University Music Hub. All amplified instruments should be stored in the specialist store room in Frankland. Those with smaller instrument may not be grated storage space to help manage spaces and control risk.
10. How do I request an absence from a rehearsal?
Absences from rehearsals for auditioned ensembles must be agreed in advance with relevant member of the University Music and Concerts team. Absence from unauditioned ensembles must be agreed by the student ensemble manager - details of whom to contact can be found on the corresponding schedule of each ensemble.
11. What do I wear for concerts?
Most University Music ensembles share a common concert dress code and this is detailed on the corresponding schedule of each ensemble. Some ensembles may have slight variations to this, and members will be advised by the ensemble co-ordinator.
12. How do I buy concert tickets?
Students can buy tickets to all concerts in advance online from the performance venues website. Alternatively, a small number of tickets are available to purchase on-the-door for each concert.
13. Can I be a Music Scholar?
University Music offers 15 scholarships to new undergraduates entering the University each year. Applications are made in advance, and unfortunately, we do not offer any further scholarships to existing students.
14. Who do I speak to if I have a Reasonable Adjustment Plan that might be relevant to my music-making?
Students who have a Reasonable Adjustment Plan (RAP) in place, or have any additional educational or pastoral needs may affect their involvement in an ensemble, may speak confidentially with members of the University Music and Concerts Team.