Creative Careers Centre

RCM violinist performing at the Royal Academy of ArtsTest
The Royal College of Music is a world-leader in career development for musicians. We emphasise the need for students to be confident and versatile communicators, not just in their professional engagements, but in everything they do.

The RCM’s renowned Creative Careers Centre provides an unparalleled service. Recognised internationally for our innovative approach to supporting young musicians, we offer resources and guidance, bespoke career advice, workshops and presentations by industry specialists, plus a broad range of professional opportunities, including performances and teaching work. For many students, the Creative Careers Centre helps pave the way to a successful lifelong career in music.

Our dedicated team partners with leading consultants, reputable arts organisations and local communities, delivering unique career-building opportunities and a direct route to the music industry. We enable musicians to discover their professional identity, gain hands-on experience and new skills, develop an entrepreneurial mind-set and build a fulfilling professional portfolio.

The skills and resources of the Creative Careers Centre are available to all students and alumni for up to five years after graduation.

What we offer

  • Extensive performance and teaching opportunities.
  • Advice on preparing effective CVs, covering letters, biographies and other essential publicity materials.
  • Step-by-step suggestions on planning your own concerts.
  • Numerous resources and directories, enabling you to find out everything you need to know about the music profession.
  • Factsheets designed to answer your most frequently asked questions.
  • Guidance on self-management, self-employment, finance and entrepreneurship.
  • Seminars, workshops and special events giving you a better view of the professional landscape.

Tailored career support

The resources offered by the Creative Careers Centre are comprehensive and varied. We provide a range of reference materials and tailored one-to-one sessions. Importantly, we understand that successful musicians today need good business skills to reinforce their artistic talents.

Each week the Creative Careers Centre produces a tailored bulletin of jobs, collating information from a range of sources. Students and alumni regularly find work through these bulletins and clients often ask to be included, knowing they are targeting a talented and experienced pool of musicians.

The Creative Careers Centre offers valuable guidance on CV and biography writing, concert programming and how to communicate effectively with audiences and clients. We can also advise students on how to develop repertoire, build audiences and develop a business idea.

We actively encourage students to be entrepreneurial, supplying expert advice on project management, marketing and publicity, online promotion, funding, artist management, diary services and tax.

Concert opportunities

The Creative Careers Centre offers concerts and individual projects throughout the year, which provide vital performance and programming experience, plus the opportunity for RCM students to raise their profile.

We provide opportunities to perform at more than 40 venues across the UK, including concert halls, churches, abbeys, festivals, museums, galleries and community venues. Examples include:

  • Kings Place
  • St James’s Piccadilly
  • St Martin-in-the-Fields
  • Waltham Abbey
  • Leeds International Chamber Music Festival
  • The Queen’s Galleries, Buckingham Palace
  • V&A Museum
  • Chelsea and Westminster Hospital

Professional Engagements Service

Thanks to the Creative Careers Centre, RCM musicians are regularly hired by organisations and members of the public to perform at events or to work as freelance orchestral and session players, as accompanists and repetiteurs, as composers and as chorus members. Fees and contracts for such work are kept in line with industry standards.

Through our Professional Engagements Service, RCM musicians have played at some of London’s most prestigious venues and landmarks, including:

  • Buckingham Palace
  • House of Lords
  • The National Gallery
  • Natural History Museum
  • Royal Opera House
  • Royal Albert Hall
  • Royal Festival Hall
  • St Paul’s Cathedral
  • Science Museum
  • Wembley Stadium
  • Windsor Castle

Teaching Service

An essential part of many musicians’ careers, teaching is widely valued as a creative and worthwhile way to share your musical passion and expertise with a new generation.

The Creative Careers Centre runs a popular teaching service which matches members of the public who want to learn with RCM students who are able to teach. Every week we receive requests for private music teachers of all types.

If you have the skills, commitment and experience you can be considered for teaching opportunities as they arise.

If you are looking to hire an RCM student, for teaching or for a different professional engagement, we have additional information elsewhere on our website.

Hire an RCM musician

International students on Tier 4 visas

The UK Government sets restrictions on the amount and type of work that students on Tier 4 visas can undertake during their studies. Any performance work must be organised by the RCM and considered an integral and assessed part of a student’s studies in order to be compliant with the terms of Tier 4 visas.

The Creative Careers Centre is very experienced at helping international students manage their workload in order to make the most of available opportunities. We will help you find the widest possible range of career strengthening experiences, both with the RCM and further afield.