Sparks events

Children at a Sparks event and an RCM student stood looking and holding a harp
Whether you are introducing children to music for the first time, or looking for inspiring ways to delve deeper, RCM Sparks has a programme of events just for you.

We are delighted to share the unforgettable thrill of live performances, workshops and courses with schools, families and young people here at the Royal College of Music and in the local community.

Free places and tickets

RCM Sparks wants to break down barriers that prevent people from accessing music education. We make a number of places and event tickets available for free to the following groups:

  • Children over the age of seven who are eligible for free school meals (whether claimed or not) and their families
  • 'Looked-after' children (ie children looked after by the local authority or in foster care) and their families
  • Black, Asian and minority ethnic children/young people and families*
  • Participants who have Special Education Needs*
  • Families who live in social housing
  • Families who are eligible for Universal Credit
  • Families/individuals who are eligible for disability benefit
  • Service families*
  • Families from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities*
  • Young carers and their families*
  • Refugee families/families with migrant status

*with a household income of less than £31,139.

If you any of these criteria apply to you please make sure to tell us at the point of booking. You may be asked to provide documentary evidence.

Events for families & children (ages 5-11)

Our Family Create, Ignite and Explorers programmes bring music to life in unforgettable ways, with practical opportunities to participate and insightful connections with wider festivals and performances.


30 May 2023, 10:30am
Weston Discovery Centre

Discover the wonderful world of musical instruments in this fun exploratory session for ages 2–5 in the Royal College of Music Museum.


29 May 2023, 10:00am
RCM Museum and Museum Weston Discovery Centre

Enjoy a variety of family-friendly activities in the Royal College of Music Museum this half term.


18 June 2023, 10:30am
Recital Hall

Join our friendly team of musicians for a morning of feel-good music-making, where total beginners, rusty returners and experienced players can feel comfortable playing together.


17 June 2023, 11:00am
Various locations

Expect music, art, science and culture with a huge range of family friendly workshops, talks and performances in the Great Exhibition Road Festival.


25 July 2023, 10:00am
Recital Hall

Tuesday 25 July-Thursday 27 July

RCM Sparks is running a junior version of our friendly and creative Springboard Composition Course, where participants will create a new piece of music as a group.


25 July 2023, 10:00am
Recital Hall

RCM Sparks is running a junior version of our friendly and creative Springboard Composition Course, where participants will create a new piece of music as a group.

Events for teenagers (ages 12-18)

Our bi-annual Springboard Composition Courses allow teenagers to explore their creativity, supported by inspiring professionals and emerging Royal College of Music composers.

We do not have anything to show at the moment. Check back regularly for the latest news about our events, or you can subscribe to our mailing list.

Events for schools

We present one free lunchtime concert every term specially tailored for school children. Hosted by a professional presenter and accompanied by a free teacher resource pack, our lunchtime concerts for schools are a fantastic opportunity to introduce young people to the excitement of classical music and to the unrivaled experience of seeing it performed live.

We also run a number of other events and concerts for school groups throughout the year.


04 July 2023, 1:05pm
Amaryllis Fleming Concert Hall

Join RCM Sparks for an exhilarating concert exploring the saxophone and brass instrument families, and take part in the usual exciting audience participation.

Gamelan workshops

The gamelan is the traditional orchestra of Indonesia, and the Royal College of Music has one of the largest sets in Europe. Gamelan has established itself at the centre of music education in the UK and features in the GCSE music course.

RCM Sparks offers practical and creative gamelan workshops for groups of up to 30 people. People of all ages (early years upwards) including those with disabilities, can enjoy gamelan workshops. Playing the gamelan is both fun and relaxing, requires no previous experience, and sessions can be tailored to suit the needs of each group.

A typical taster session lasts 90 minutes and includes:

  • A short introduction to the cultural context of gamelan
  • A chance to have a go at playing the instruments

By the end of the session you will be able to perform a short piece of traditional Javanese or Balinese music.

How to book

We are now taking bookings for gamelan workshops during the Autumn Term. Workshops will take place on the 7th, 8th and 9th November at the Royal College of Music. To book a workshop please contact the gamelan team.

Workshops held at the Royal College of Music are usually offered subsidised rate of £125 (including booking & administration fee, excluding VAT) for a session lasting 90 minutes.

Get in touch

If you have any queries about booking a gamelan workshop for your premises or would like to talk to us about the practicalities of a gamelan session, please contact our Gamelan team.

Gamelan team

Booking and general gamelan enquiries

+44 (0)20 7591 4394

Learning at the Royal College of Music Museum

The Royal College of Music Museum has undergone a major development, providing new facilities including a new purpose-built gallery and a hands-on discovery area. RCM Sparks is working in close partnership with the RCM Museum to develop of programme of learning and participation events that explore the wonders and historical treasures of the RCM collections.

Please get in touch to find out more.

RCM Museum

General enquiries

0207 591 4863

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