Find your place on our specialist Popular Music course. Here, you can study on an industry-focused program in a inspiring art school environment.
This course is designed for performers, composers and musicologists. You will follow one of three specialist pathways: performance, songwriting or popular music theory, or work across all three areas for a broader range of skills.
All types of music from Jazz to Heavy Metal, are ‘popular’ with their own audiences, and on this course, you will have the freedom to explore all the styles you are passionate about.
Our degree programme will prepare you for a career in music, developing your musical expertise, and exploring the range of work available to professional musicians. You will study, play, and write music in a variety of styles, developing musical adaptability. Exciting projects will involve both independent and collaborative working.
Herefordshire has a strong tradition of music festivals, community music, a burgeoning live music scene and varied music programme at The Courtyard arts centre. There is a thriving community of city-based musicians, composers, producers, music managers and agents and also a number of local recording studios with an industry reputation. This course taps into all of this with an exciting, vocationally-based programme. We want you to become versatile, thoughtful musicians, and support you to achieve your musical ambitions whatever your genre.
Individual tuition is provided on your principal study instrument throughout the course. You will also develop a thorough grounding in events management, marketing and promotion, music theory, contextual studies, live sound, recording, ensemble and workshop skills.
- Strong team of in-house and visiting industry-based lecturers.
- 1-to-1 instrumental tuition on your principal study instrument (1 hour per week, 24 weeks per year).
- Our annual HCA Music Week provides exclusive insights and master classes from industry professionals, outstanding performers, practitioners, composers and arrangers.
- Opportunity and guidance to create a showreel of performance footage – a highly desirable benefit and increasingly sought after in the industry.
- Access excellent rehearsal spaces, studio facilities and production suites.
- Industry standard Apple Mac facilities.
- Study and engage with live and recorded audio.
- Support to create your own bespoke website to promote your work.
Our recording studio runs the latest Apple Mac Pro and Logic Pro Digital Audio Workstation (DAW). The mix of both high-end digital, and retro analogue music mixing and processing technologies, will enable you to produce a diverse range of experimental and professional sound recordings to a very high standard.
You will also have access to our music practice rooms for individual preparation, as well as both small acoustic ensemble development and large band rehearsals. All our music rooms are equipped with piano/keyboards, sound playback systems and our band rooms feature Yamaha/Korg keyboards, Fender guitar amplifiers, Yamaha drum kit with Zildjian cymbals, full PA system and microphones.
Our Apple Mac computer suites facilitate specialised working, enabling you to explore and utilise a range of equipment for creating and editing sound. All machines feature Logic Pro and Sibelius as well as a multitude of software required for a career in the Music Industry. Our team of experienced technical demonstrators will assist you in the production of professional quality music and sound, web design, video editing and with a range of software for use with digital and printed media.
Our experienced course tutors are also currently active in the music industry. You will have the opportunity to work on placement with local community music organisations, recording studios, or music festivals, or can set up your own initiative if you prefer.
You will have a solid foundation to work as a self-employed and self-sustaining professional musician. Potential career options include performance, songwriting, production, music business, education, event management and marketing, music journalism. Students can also progress to further postgraduate studies.
- Minimum age 18.
- Successful audition and interview.
- Academic achievement – we would normally expect applicants to have achieved 80 UCAS Tariff Points at entry but, whilst qualifications are important, our offers are not solely based on academic results. We may make offers based on other evidence of talent and suitability for the course.
- 80 UCAS Points on the New UCAS Tariff system for 2017 equates to 200 UCAS points on the previous points system – for more details please see tariff explanation and advice on the UCAS website.
- Applicants whose first language is not English – proof of IELTS overall score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all sections (reading, writing, listening & speaking) is required.
- Applications from mature students with relevant experience will also be considered.
- Recognition of Prior Learning Opportunities – the college welcomes applications from students with prior learning and/or previous experience. Further details on eligibility can be found on page 15 of our Admissions Policy.
- Alternatively, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can offer further advice on HCA and the UWTSD awarding body requirements.
1-to-1 specialist music tuition in your specialist instrument
1 hour per week, 24 weeks per year
WatchStudents and Tutors
“There’s a real flexibility in this course: you can balance being a practical musician with studying music theory and recording techniques and we also get an hour’s private tuition on our instrument per week which is brilliant. It’s also great that the tutors are so well connected, they often bring in guest musicians.Read Alex's story3
“I had the opportunity to be one of a small number of students to be involved with a Q&A session with Ian Matthews (Kasabian), to run the sound desk for singer-songwriter Charlie Dore and to act as a technician for The KoGo Project. On top of this, I have met lots of inspirational and successful musicians, from which I have learnt new musical techniques and skills and made connections which have been helpful to me when finding placements.
“Excellent staff, excellent facilities, excellent support.” Student Quote
Internal Student Survey