Music Performance BMus(Hons)

2019-20 (also available for 2018-19 and 2017-18)

2018-19 (also available for 2019-20 and 2017-18)

2018-19 (also available for 2017-18)

If you want to pursue instrumental or vocal performance to a high level, we’ll give you opportunities to perform solo and in orchestras, choirs and bands.

It’s not too late to apply for September 2018. Find out more

Start date

17 September 2018


3 years full-time
4 years inc. placement year

Entry requirements

A Level - BBB


See full entry requirements



Places available (subject to change)


Phone contact: +44 (0)1484 472007

About the course

If you are excited about our BMus Music course but wish to focus especially on Performance – solo performance, band or ensemble playing, other modes of performance, and the historical and cultural aspects of performance – then this course is for you. It is designed for expert performers with a passion for performing across a variety of styles and contexts.

You’ll be taught by expert academic staff, a number of whom are also professional performers with active international careers as soloists and ensemble members. You’ll have up to 20 hours of individual tuition provided by our team of instrumental and vocal tutors, who are experienced professional musicians.

Visiting masterclasses and workshops are a regular feature of the course, given by distinguished performers such as Emma Kirkby (voice), David Childs (euphonium), Martin Roscoe (piano) and Wissam Boustany (flute). We also regularly host concerts and workshops with leading chamber groups. Staff and students alike give frequent concerts, forming new ensembles and exploring unfamiliar repertoire. We have strong links with local, national and international music organisations, so you could have the opportunity to work alongside bands, ensembles and orchestras such as the Orchestra of Opera North and Huddersfield Choral Society.

You’ll have opportunities to study composition and musicology. In your musicology modules you’ll be able to explore how music and performance have developed through history. You could choose to specialise in subjects like baroque music, experimental music or film music, world musics, and opera and musical theatre.

In your third year, you could spend a year abroad studying performance or choose to take a year-long placement with an employer.

The BMus Music Performance course is the perfect opportunity for those students wishing to develop and extend their skills as a solo performer and ensemble player. Alongside this, students can tackle a range of advanced and vocational skills, such as conducting, improvisation, keyboard skills, singing with movement - a course ideal for a rounded, versatile as well as outstanding performer.

Professor Philip Thomas, Admissions Tutor, Music and Music Technology


In addition to the compulsory short term (8 week) work placement in the final year Work and Professional Practice in Music module, this course offers you the opportunity to take an optional one-year (48 week) work placement after your second year, in the UK or abroad. Previous placement providers in the subject area of Music have included Kirklees Music School, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, Buxton Opera House and Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival.

I contributed over 100 hours of work experience collectively in separate schools over the last two years of University. This helped me to decide that teaching is where I really want to be. The latest of those placements is what has directed me to Maths instead of Music.

scott gartland

Scott Gartland, Music BMus(Hons) in 2016

Entry requirements

BBBat A Level including a minimum grade B in Music or Music Technology

120 UCAS tariff points from a combination of Level 3 qualifications including a minimum grade B at A Level or Distinction in BTEC in Music or Music Technology

DDM in BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma

  • Practical and theory music grades are accepted in the total points (see UCAS tariff).
  • Admission to this course is strictly by audition at which a high standard of performance ability must be demonstrated.
  • Applicants intending to study instrumental or vocal performance must have reached at least Grade 8 standard of the Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM), Rockschool or equivalent at entry.
  • Pass Access to Higher Education Diploma with 45 Level 3 credits at Merit or above, to include modules in Music or Music Technology
  • 120 UCAS tariff points from International Baccalaureate qualifications which should include modules in Music or Music Technology.

For international students:

You should demonstrate your ability to play to approximately Grade 8 ABRSM standard and provide proof via a DVD, or a link to a url movie, or the actual exam. You'll also be required to demonstrate your music theory ability, ideally to Grade 8 ABRSM (again this could come from the exam or from any piece of notation - for example, harmony exercises or compositions).

Other suitable experience or qualifications will be considered. For further information please see the University's minimum entry requirements.

Music at Huddersfield

Why choose to study Music at the University of Huddersfield? The University of Huddersfield offers a diverse and vibrant student environment, located on one central town centre campus site. Students talk about their experiences here at the University: what they like about their courses and what they enjoy most outside of the curriculum.

Course Detail

Core modules:

Solo Performance 1

You will work closely with an individual instrumental/vocal tutor throughout the year to develop your technical skills and musical insight to prepare you for solo and ensemble performance at intermediate and Honours level.

Performance Skills 1

This module is designed to help you to gain key skills in general musicianship. You will learn about and practice skills in improvisation and aural awareness, as well as gain experience in critical evaluation of concerts and your own development as a musician. You will have the opportunity to develop skills and experience in ensemble performance and participation. Assessment consists of practical tests and coursework assignments in which you will demonstrate your knowledge, understanding and skills through written assignments, music performance, and practical tests of your musicianship.

Introduction to Music Research

The module will introduce you to a wide range of music, from medieval and renaissance song to contemporary film scores, and from romantic symphonies to popular song traditions. Key issues, themes and controversies in musicology will be considered.

Introduction to Analysis

The module will provide you with a grounding in the basic skills of musical analysis through the study of classical and popular music. Both printed scores and recordings will be studied to give you the opportunity to develop the complementary skills of score-based analysis and/or aural analysis and critical listening.

Option modules:

Choose one from a list which may include:

Technology for Music

This module introduces key practical concepts of technology used within music and is designed specifically for students on our BMus course. You will have the chance to learn how to use music notation and DAW applications alongside recording techniques focused on 'classical' concert hall work and location based recording. The module is assessed via a recording test and culminates with a composition project using the Logic Pro.

Computer Composition 1

In this foundation module you will study composition and technical processes for writing in a range of possible genres, and will have the opportunity to develop a broad understanding of sound synthesis, audio manipulation and music production skills. The module includes tuition on technical fundamentals while introducing composers and genres that constitute the breadth of sound computer-based composition offers. Topics include theory and practice in sound synthesis and sampling, and genres include Musique Concrète, Elektronische Musick, ambient music, and contemporary electronic music artists and styles. Assessment is through coursework: creative exercises, free composition and accompanying written documents.

Plus choose one from a list which may include:

Composition 1

This module offers an essential introduction to the fundamentals of composition by exploring the various musical parameters of melody, harmony, rhythm, timbre and texture through a series of preliminary exercises given in seminars and group tutorials. In term two you will be able to build on this knowledge through the creation of a portfolio of short pieces for keyboard, voice and strings. The second term also includes demonstrations and performances from visiting professional artists. Assessment is though portfolio of coursework.

Stylistic Composition

You will attend weekly lectures and seminars that explore a variety of stylistic compositional approaches from Baroque to 20th Century. The emphasis will not be on originality but on developing a heightened sense of stylistic awareness through the close examination of a work’s instrumentation and compositional materials as well as its form and structure. In addition to utilising works within their original context, the module will use examples that demonstrate ways in which these stylistic idioms have been drawn upon and adapted by the modern film composer. You will produce a short folio of compositions in term one and an extended composition with commentary in term two.

Songwriting 1

This module provides an introduction to songwriting and raises the question of what songwriting is, or might be, in the twenty first century. Through the exploration of a range of compositional and vocal techniques, you will aim to acquire a knowledge and understanding of an array of songwriting styles both historical and contemporary with the view of developing an individual creative voice. You will have the opportunity to explore approaches to lyric writing, chord progressions and song structure, utilising different accompaniments.

Grooves, Glitches and Crackles (Foundation Studies in Popular Music and Electronica)

This module traces both the developments and practical applications of technology in compositional practice as well as aesthetic issues in sound technology and practice. It will help you embrace theoretical writings concerning the proliferation of popular genres in contemporary culture as well as ways in which the computer and other technologies have challenged the definitions of sound and music. Key topics include: the history of early recording and electronic instruments, music and ethnicity, mixers, DJs and turntablism, club culture, electronica and sampling practice. The module is assessed through coursework, including two essays and an album review.

Teaching and assessment

24% of the study time on this course is spent in lectures, seminars, workshops etc.

You'll learn in a range of teaching and learning formats, including lectures, seminars, individual tutorials, practical workshops, composition clinics, masterclasses and rehearsals, and opportunities for individually devised projects that may involve off-campus placements. Students are encouraged to take a full part in extra-curricular activities, including participation in Directed Ensembles, chamber music and concert attendance both on and off campus. Assessment of this course takes various forms including written and oral examinations, dissertations, essays, seminar papers, analyses, practical projects, composition folios, performance recitals, learning journals and peer assessment.

Your module specification/course handbook will provide full details of the assessment criteria applying to your course.

Feedback (either written and/or verbal) is normally provided on all coursework submissions within three term time weeks – unless the submission was made towards the end of the session in which case feedback would be available on request after the formal publication of results. Feedback on final coursework is available on request after the publication of results.

Further information

The teaching year normally starts in September with breaks at Christmas and Easter, finishing with a main examination/assessment period around May/June. Timetables are normally available one month before registration. 

Your course is made up of modules and each module is worth a number of credits. Each year you study modules to the value of 120 credits, adding up to 360 credits in total for a bachelor’s qualification. These credits can come from a combination of core, compulsory and optional modules but please note that optional modules may not run if we do not have enough students interested.

If you achieve 120 credits for the current stage you are at, you may progress to the next stage of your course, subject to any professional, statutory or regulatory body guidelines.

Teaching excellence

  • Here at Huddersfield, you’ll be taught by some of the best lecturers in the country. The University is number one in England for the proportion of staff with teaching qualifications (HEFCE, Dec 2016)
  • We’re unique in the fact that all our permanent teaching staff* have, or are completing, doctorates. This expertise, together with our teaching credentials, means that students here learn from knowledgeable and well-qualified teachers and academics who are at the forefront of their subject area.
  • For the past nine years, we’ve been the UK’s leading university for National Teaching Fellowships too, which rate Britain’s best lecturers. It’s all part of our ongoing drive for teaching excellence, which helps our students to achieve great things too.

*Permanent staff, after probation: some recently appointed colleagues will only obtain recognition in the months after their arrival in Huddersfield, once they have started teaching; research degrees applies to those on contracts of more than half-time.


The University of Huddersfield is home to a vibrant, diverse, international, and innovative group of music researchers. Our staff are recognised as leading figures in their fields, as evidenced by major commissions, performances, recordings, and publications. Our international postgraduate student community includes early career researchers who are already making significant contributions as composers, performers, technicians, engineers, and musicologists.

In the 2014 REF, 85% of music research at Huddersfield was judged to be Internationally Excellent, with 44% of the overall submission ranked as ‘World-Leading’. In addition to a strong profile of individual research outputs, Huddersfield’s research environment for music was tied for 7th in the sector, alongside Edinburgh, Southampton, Royal Holloway and Cambridge. The impact of Huddersfield’s music research was judged to be 5th among the 84 submissions in music, drama, dance and performing arts, receiving the second highest possible score. The ranking for impact acknowledges the breadth and reach of research at Huddersfield, with impact case studies encompassing innovations in music technology and audio software, historically-informed performance practice in early music, and intercultural exchange in music composition as a model for social change.

There are five research centres in Music Technology; the Centre for Research in New Music (CeReNeM), the Huddersfield Centre for Performance Research (HuCPeR), Centre for the Study of Music, Gender and Identity (MUGI), the Sound.Music.Image Collaboration Research Centre (SMIC) and the Popular Music Studies Research Group.

For more information, please refer to our research pages.

The Music Department

For more information regarding the Music department at the University of Huddersfield, please click the images below

Your Career

*Percentage of graduates from these subject areas at Huddersfield who go on to work and / or further study within six months of graduating (Destinations of Leavers Survey 2015/16).

93%Graduates employed*

Student support

At the University of Huddersfield, you'll find support networks and services to help you get ahead in your studies and social life. Whether you study at undergraduate or postgraduate level, you'll soon discover that you're never far away from our dedicated staff and resources to help you to navigate through your personal student journey. Find out more about all our support services.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.

We review all optional modules each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let students know in good time the options available for them to choose for the following year.

We will only change core modules for a course if it is necessary for us to do so, for example to maintain course accreditation. We will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before you begin the relevant academic year.

Sometimes we have to make changes to other aspects of a course or how it is delivered. We only make these changes if they are for reasons outside of our control, or where they are for our students’ benefit. Again, we will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before the relevant academic year. Our regulations set out our procedure which we will follow when we need to make any such changes.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England is the principal regulator for the University.

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