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.

Get advice and great ideas to improve your playing or singing, have fun and share your musical journey with us!

Cling film and rubber bands

YolanDa Brown is joined by cor anglais player Sue Böhling, double bassist Hugh Kluger and percussionist Henry Baldwin as they reveal the secrets of caring for their instruments.

Dame Evelyn Glennie shares her experience and tips on performing

Dame Evelyn Glennie is the world’s premier solo percussionist, performing worldwide with the greatest orchestras, conductors and artists.

Meet the BBC’s Young Jazz Musician of the Year!

Deschanel Gordon is BBC’s Young Jazz Musician of the Year 2020. We interviewed him about his competition experience, his musical journey and what’s in store for the future.

Join NYJO online in their virtual academy!

Whether you are a complete beginner or a gigging pro, the NYJO Virtual Academy has materials designed to inspire, challenge and take your playing to another level.

Free resources from our friends at Figurenotes

Dust off your instrument and get your hands on a bundle of FREE resources from Figurenotes. These are ideal for teachers to send to their students too - great support for those adapting to online teaching. 

Wake Up Shake Up

Struggling to get your kids motivated to practise at home? Ali’s 5 minute ‘musical workout’ will get them ready for an active practice session.

Record your practice

It can be really beneficial to record your practice session. Our Chief Examiner, John Holmes, suggests using the ABRSM marking criteria to review and evaluate your practice.

Are you practising your instrument or the music?

ABRSM's Chief Examiner, John Holmes, emphasises the importance of practising the instrument itself as well as the pieces you’re working on.

Practice makes permanent

ABRSM's Chief Examiner, John Holmes, highlights the importance of ingraining the habits you want to keep, rather than just practising until it's right.

The key ingredients of music

ABRSM's Chief Examiner, John Holmes, discusses the core musical ingredients we should focus on in our practice.

Asha, Emma and Roella share their stories of making the semi-finals of BBC Young Jazz Musician 2020

The BBC Young Jazz Musician competition is the BBC’s platform for young, talented jazz musicians. Following the success of the first three editions, the biennial competition returns in 2020 to celebrate and showcase the next generation of UK Jazz musicians.

How to put on online concerts and gigs

In this article from the ISM, arts entrepreneur David Taylor shares advice on setting up, promoting and bringing in some income from online performances.

How are Performance Grades assessed?

Become the examiner! What mark would you give this Piano Performance Grade? Watch, mark, and listen to commentary from our Chief Examiner, John Holmes.

Take a minute to listen

In a world that is becoming increasingly visually loud, Minute of Listening helps pupils develop their creative listening skills.

Guy Johnston & Tom Poster perform Bridge

Guy Johnston (cello) and Tom Poster (piano) perform Spring Song by Bridge.

Hear Hannah’s story about the ARSM

ARSM is all about the performance, and gives you the opportunity to create and perform your own programme of music for the first time.

Berlin Phil Puzzle Book

With many nurseries and schools shut, the Berlin Philharmonic has put together a wonderful puzzle and colouring in book for young musicians.

Challenges and easy bits

ABRSM's Chief Examiner, John Holmes, discusses balancing how we should practise tricky passages in pieces with sections that come more easily to us.

Tricky passages

Our Chief Examiner, John Holmes, talks about his techniques for navigating difficult passages in pieces.

Chief Examiner share his practice tips

ABRSM's John Holmes shares his best practice tips to help your musical progression.

Warming up

ABRSM's Chief Examiner, John Holmes, emphasises the importance of a consistent warm-up for your practice.

Developing your online profile

This year, NYJO has been introducing its musicians to a range of influential figures from the creative industries.

It’s never not worth it

ABRSM's Chief Examiner, John Holmes, encourages us to take advantage of any opportunity to practise, no matter how little time we have.

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