Cambridge is unrivalled for the quality and diversity of the musical activities that take place within it. These activities encompass the choral, instrumental and orchestral, and students at Murray Edwards College play important and varied roles in this rich musical culture. On a University level, there are the Cambridge University Music Society's orchestras and chorus, the University Chamber Orchestra and Chamber Choirs, and also many opportunities for chamber music playing, both formal and informal. Many Colleges have Chapel Choirs and student-run music societies that organise innumerable College concerts in which students from a mixture of Colleges frequently participate.
Murray Edwards College has its own friendly student-run Music Society, which arranges concerts on a regular basis and is keen to support musicians in College of all styles and standards, including popular music and world music in addition to the Western classical tradition. The College is keen to encourage as much musical activity as possible, and in addition to large-scale collaborations with Fitzwilliam and Churchill Music Societies, the Music Society also arranges recitals and concerts within College. These include social evenings with food and drink, during which College musicians are invited to contribute on an informal basis. These events have proved very successful in attracting a wide range of musical talent and a diversity of instrumental and vocal contributions, and have been well received and supported by the College community.
Chloe Valenti, the Director of Music, assists in the running of the Murray Edwards College Music Society. Her central role is to arrange and oversee College musical activities and to reinforce and build on our existing links with the music societies of neighbouring Colleges like Fitzwilliam, Churchill and Magdalene, by cultivating a centralised, intercollegiate system of publicity and sharing of musical resources. She is always keen to hear from students who would like to take an active role in College music, whatever their style or standard, whether as organisers or performers, or both. Please don't hesitate to get in contact on firstname.lastname@example.org.
The College has its own Chamber Choir run by Tory Sawyer, a second-year muso. It practices once or twice a week and performs in a range of musical styles. In the past the Choir has performed at the College Christmas formals, in recitals and has even busked in central Cambridge for charity events. New members are always welcome! For more information contact Tory on email@example.com.
Orchestral musicians are encouraged to join the Orchestra on the Hill, an orchestra made up of students from the ‘hill' Colleges, including Murray Edwards. OOTH concerts usually take place in conjunction with Fitzwilliam and Churchill College Music Societies, and occur once or twice a term. Students from Murray Edwards College play in, conduct and administer these concerts and at least one concert takes place in the College Dome. For more information see their website.
Many College students have been members of the University's prestigious Inter-Collegiate Instrumental Awards Scheme. This organises professional chamber music coaching and concerts for the high-quality ensembles it creates and fosters. The application form and information sheet may be downloaded from the University Instrumental Awards page.
The College's annual Music Scholarship Competition is open to all performing musicians of all styles, and takes the form of an evening of musical performances, adjudicated by the Director of Studies in Music and an external adjudicator. A prize of £250 is awarded to the winner, £200 of which is put towards the cost of music lessons. In addition, the winner is encouraged to play an active role in college musical life in conjunction with the Music Society. For more information contact the Director of Music on firstname.lastname@example.org.
The College's musical resources include a Steinway Model 'B' piano, located in the Fellows' Drawing Room, the College venue used the most regularly for concerts and rehearsals. Pianists (typically Grade VIII upwards) are welcome to use the Steinway at any time when the room is not being used. In order to be added to the list of those allowed to use the piano, please contact the Director of Music, Chloe Valenti, on email@example.com. The key is available from the Porters' Lodge.There are also three College practice rooms containing upright pianos for use by all members of College.
Murray Edwards College admits one or two undergraduates per year to read Music. Every College Music student is provided with a digital piano in her room, Part II students offering Performance are given a £200 subsidy for lessons and all music students may apply for additional support for instrumental lessons though the Academic Needs Fund. Students applying to read music at Murray Edwards College will be asked to submit samples of schoolwork, namely harmony and counterpoint exercises and full-length essays. At the interview, candidates are set a written test that contains exercises in harmony and some short answers to specific and more general questions concerning the history of music. The interview itself involves a discussion with two interviewers on various aspects of music. It is an opportunity for the college to get to know the candidate and to gain a sense of the breadth and depth of their musical knowledge and interests.
We aim to admit students with significant musical potential who can cope with the rigorous intellectual demands of the Tripos, and who are willing to contribute actively to the musical life of the College and of the University. Detailed information about the Music Tripos can be found on the Music Faculty website, but here is a brief overview of the course;
Music at Cambridge and Murray Edwards College is taught in the same way as other Cambridge undergraduate courses. Individual and small-group supervisions are combined with lectures and seminars at the University Music Faculty. All music students in the University attend the same lectures and sit the same examinations at the end of each year. The Director of Studies in music is responsible for appointing a team of supervisors who arrange and teach the individual and small-group sessions and who also regularly set and assess written work. At least some of this tuition will be provided by the Director of Studies him/herself, but the teaching team will also include course lecturers, Fellows of other Colleges, external supervisors and post-graduate students of the University.
The Music Faculty has a comprehensive music library (The Pendlebury Library) containing a large and frequently updated collection of books, journals, scores and recordings, as well as a listening room, equipped with several hi-fi systems including LP, cassette, CD and mini-disc functions. The library at Murray Edwards College also contains a section devoted to music, which has been recently updated and improved. Students at all stages of the tripos course may also borrow from the University Library,
Miss Chloe Valenti is the Director of Studies in Music and the Director of Music at Murray Edwards College. She is very happy to be contacted with any queries you may have about music at Murray Edwards or the Music Tripos course.
Checked by ER Aug 2011