Latest exam updates

Music Theory exams – March 2021

  • Online Music Theory exams (Grades 1 to 5) – we are cancelling the online exams planned for 16 March. Exams in May and June will go ahead as planned.
  • Paper Music Theory exams (Grades 6 to 8) – we will not be offering these exams in March. The next exams at Grades 6 to 8 will be in June 2021.
  • Grade 5 Music Theory requirement - from 1 January to 30 April 2021 only, candidates can take Grade 6 to 8 Performance or Practical exams without first passing Grade 5 Music Theory. From 1 May 2021, the Grade 5 Music Theory requirement will return with flexibility about timing.

For more information click here.

Performance Grade booking

The next booking period for remotely-assessed Performance Grade and ARSM exams opens in February. For details, see our dates and fees page.

Publications & audio

Supporting applications

Singing Practice Partner

Featuring all 66 accompaniments from the Songbook Plus series. Download the tracks you need and sing in your chosen key, at your chosen speed!

Unaccompanied song

Read our guide to the unaccompanied song.

What the examiner looks for

  • Excellent communication
  • Totally secure memory
  • Overall pitch sustained with assurance
  • Accurately controlled intervals and intonation
  • A well-chosen, comfortable key for the candidate’s voice – ideally a singer will know this instinctively and not need a starting note from the piano
  • Effective tempo choice and inherent sense of rhythm
  • Instinct and ability for story-telling
  • Facial involvement – a singer’s eyes are so important
  • Expressive use of colour and dynamics
  • Use of rubato where appropriate

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