Department of Music
The Department is committed to providing a breadth of musical experience. Studies in musicology courses span four centuries, covering music from Byrd to Beyoncé; all composition students have their work played by members of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra; performance students give recitals, take part in Open Mic nights, and get the opportunity to play in city centre venues; and music by acousmatic student composers is featured in the Cornerstone Arts Festival.
All students are encouraged to participate in the many practical activities organised by the department, including choirs, orchestra, concert band, chamber music ensemble and the innovative laptop orchestra H.E.L.L.O (Hope Electronic Live Laptop Orchestra). During 2011-12, the Hope Orchestra embarked on a two and a half year project during which they will perform of all of Mozart’s Piano Concertos with our Professor of Musical Performance, Joanna MacGregor.
Our graduates follow a range of careers both inside and outside the world of music. Over 90% of Hope graduates go on to work or further study within six months of graduating.
There are a number of (competitive) instrumental and choral scholarships available.
Head, Department of Music
|Subject||BA Music||MA Creative Practice|
|MA Music since 1900|
|MA Beatles, Popular Music and Society|
|MA/PGCert Sacred Music|
For further information, please contact the Departmental Office:
Department of Music
Tel: 0151 291 3284
Liverpool Hope is a long-established centre of excellence for the study, composition and performance of new music. Recently added specialisms include musicology, early music, and historically-informed performance. The Department also benefits from close partnerships with a number of arts organisations including the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, European Opera Centre and Milapfest. The Cornerstone Festival, held each November, provides a platform for some of our latest work, programmed alongside visiting artists and ensembles from across the globe. Head of Music, Professor Stephen Pratt, is Festival Director.
In the most recent Research Assessment Exercise, 65% of the music research submitted by Liverpool Hope was 'recognised internationally' for its originality, significance and rigour, and, of this, 30% was highlighted as 'internationally excellent'. The Department has continued to develop its research profile, having made three new appointments during the 2011-12 academic year, and is currently in the process of adding two Professorial Fellows, in composition and musicology.
The Department runs its own music research group and seminar series, and participates in a number of cross-disciplinary activities including meetings of research groups. Central to the Department’s research culture is its growing community of postgraduate students, both in taught MA programmes and research degrees.
Students benefit from Hope's longstanding partnerships with arts organisations that share its commitment to education. The University is the Higher Education Partner of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, and members of the orchestra teach, perform and advise students at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.
Our partners also include the Indian arts trust Milapfest, and the European Opera Centre, which provides training and performance opportunities for early-career opera singers. In 2010 Hope also became one of the first UK universities to achieve the status of an 'All-SteinwaySchool'.
Q1: What makes studying music at Liverpool Hope special?
A1: Liverpool boasts a vibrant and varied musical life, from the legacy of the Beatles via the city’s two cathedrals to the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. At Liverpool Hope University we use this excellent infrastructure to provide you with a solid and broad education that equips you well for further study and professional life in many areas. At the same time we encourage you to develop your own interests with the help of our faculty’s strengths in composition, popular music, musicology, early music, sacred music, and performance.
For information on other courses offered by the music department, please use the Course Finder
Q3: Can I visit the department?
A3: Yes. The University holds Open Days where you can visit the department and speak to our faculty.
Q4: What should I put on my UCAS form?
A4: Please summarise your achievements in a clear and concise way, explaining what sets you apart from other candidates. Please list any ensembles/bands/orchestras you belong to as well as any prizes or awards that you have won. Include any experience in composition and conducting that you may have. Please pay attention to form and presentation.
Q5: Will I be interviewed or auditioned?
A5: If you apply for Single Honours, you will sit a short test in music theory. You will then perform a piece of your choice for about five minutes on your main instrument, and we conclude with an interview to find out more about your musical interests and expectations. Applicants for Combined Honours may be requested to go through the same procedure. Please allow at least an hour for the whole process.
Q6: What Grade should I be performing at?
A6: We expect a good level of performance, normally the equivalent to Grade VII (ABRSM) or above. If you do not have taken any such exams, do not worry, as we assess all applicants individually through a short audition. Essential keyboard skills (Grade V) will be to your advantage.
Q7: Do you accept mature students?
A7: Yes. We strongly encourage applications from mature students. If you do not possess the qualifications specified by UCAS, please ensure that your references and personal statement give us an accurate picture of your abilities. We will consider individual cases very carefully.
Q8: What happens if I miss my grades?
A8: Your application will automatically be entered into the UCAS Clearing procedure. Because we form our opinion based on more than exam grades alone, we sometimes still accept students who have narrowly missed their grades.
Q9: Do I have to pay extra for my instrumental/vocal lessons?
A9: No, these are provided free, though participation in the performance courses at second and third year are subject to successful performance in the previous year.
Q10: Who will be my instrumental/vocal teachers?
A10: Thanks to our exclusive partnership with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, its outstanding players teach orchestral instruments at our department. Other instruments and singing are taught by equally experienced performers. Our Professor of Performance is the internationally renowned pianist Joanna McGregor OBE.
Q11: Will my compositions be performed?
Q11: Yes. All Single Honours students have their work played by members of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra. Also, we regularly invite high-profile ensembles— e.g., The Sixteen in 2011/ 12—to perform our students’ work.
Q12: What equipment and facilities will I have access to?
A12: The University continues to invest significantly into its music department’s equipment. Developments and acquisitions in recent years include the Cornerstone Building (£7 million), state- of-the-art electronic studio facilities(£60000), 15 pianos and grand pianos by Steinway & Sons (£250000), and a recording studio.
Head of Music
Senior Lecturer in Music Technology
Senior Lecturer in Popular Music
Professor of Sacred Music
Professorial Fellow in Music (Composition)
Mr Mark Pountney
|Ben Cottrell (RLPO)||Sax (www.beatsnpieces.net)|
|Brendan Ball (RLPO)||Trumpet|
|Chris Morely||French Horn|
|Esther Ingram (RLPO)||Flute Tutor|
|Gethyn Jones (RLPO)||Cello|
|Kate Smith||Popular Music Vocal Tutor|
|Lynne Rogers||Vocal Tutor|
|Nick Bhattacharjee||Flute Tutor|
|Thomas Verity (RLPO)||Clarinet|
|Vanessa Williamson||Classical Vocal Tutor|