Latest exam updates

Performance Grade exams

We are pleased to confirm that we will be offering Performance Grade exams every month for the remainder of 2021. Please check our Dates and Fees page for details.

Grade 5 Music Theory waiver (not applicable in the UK & Ireland)

We are extending our Grade 5 Music Theory waiver until 23 May 2021. This means that candidates with a Grade 6 to 8 Performance Grade exam submission date up to and including 23 May can take their exam without first passing Grade 5 Music Theory. We are making this exceptional arrangement to allow candidates who have been unable to take an exam in recent months to progress with their learning. From 24 May, the Grade 5 Music Theory requirement will return. For exam dates/exam submission dates after 23 May, all candidates taking a Grade 6 to 8 Performance or Practical Grade must first pass Grade 5 Music Theory.

For all press and media enquiries please contact Jon Flinn on 07811 397122

or email [email protected]

Landmark exam designed to reach broader range of musicians tops 100,000 bookings in just months

2 months ago

A radical new music exam designed to appeal to a broader range of musicians by focussing on their performance skills and assessing them by submitted video recordings has attracted more than 100,000 bookings.

The ABRSM Performance Grade excludes traditional scales and aural and sight-reading tests and focuses entirely on candidates’ performance of their chosen music and their use of essential skills of communication, interpretation and storytelling to bring it to life.

It is designed to appeal to musicians who, beyond the performance focus, want the freedom and flexibility that comes with recording a performance when and where they choose and, as of today, has notched up 104,000 bookings across more than 30 countries since its launch in October.

ABRSM Chief Executive Chris Cobb said: “We wanted the Performance Grade to complement traditional practical exams but to appeal to a broader range of musicians by offering them more choice and flexibility.

“Even allowing for the suspension of practical exam alternatives, the number of bookings is an incredible response and a clear sign of the appeal of this new type of assessment which also suits various specific needs and preferences of the learner.”

The Performance Grade is a regulated qualification and is available at Grades 1 to 8. It carries the same value as traditional Practical Grades and students can switch between Practical and Performance Grades as they progress. Candidates will be awarded the same UCAS points for Performance Grades at Grades 6 to 8 as they would have received for Practical Grades for the same levels.

Candidates can book Performance Grade places via the ABRSM website from March 1st. The assessment is currently available in more than 30 countries around the world and will be made available later this year to candidates in all 93 nations in which ABRSM operates.


Note to editors

  1. Established in 1889, ABRSM is one of the UK’s leading music education organisations, one of its largest music publishers and the world’s leading provider of music exams, offering assessments to more than 600,000 candidates in over 90 countries every year. ABRSM’s mission is to inspire achievement in music. It does this globally by supporting music teaching and learning worldwide in partnership with four Royal Schools of Music: the Royal Academy of Music; Royal College of Music; Royal Northern College of Music and Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

Media enquiries to Jon Flinn on 07811 397122

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