Rhinegold

Katy Wright

Deputy Editor, Classical Music

Birmingham Conservatoire granted Royal title

12:01, 25th September 2017

Birmingham Conservatoire’s new £57m home opens its doors to students today (25 September) with the news that the institution has been granted a royal title by Her Majesty the Queen.

The institution will be renamed the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, joining a select list of performing arts institutions bearing the royal imprimatur.

Permission to use the title ‘Royal’ is granted by the Sovereign, acting on the advice of her ministers. Such titles are conferred sparingly, and all applicants must satisfy several strict conditions.

The bestowment follows the HRH The Earl of Wessex becoming the Conservatoire’s first Royal Patron in March 2016.

Professor Julian Lloyd Webber, principal of the conservatoire, said: ‘With our new name and suitably magnificent new home we intend to set the global benchmark for music and drama education and performance.

‘This is a hugely significant moment for music and drama education in the UK. The Royal title bears testimony to the value the Conservatoire rightly places on the importance of the performing arts in all our lives.’

Professor Philip Plowden, vice-chancellor of Birmingham City University, said: ‘The Royal title not only indicates the Birmingham Conservatoire’s national and international repute but also its transformative impact on people’s lives. It has both nurtured the talent of many household names and developed a programme of widening music participation that has benefited thousands of young people and their families from diverse communities across England.

‘We are all extremely proud of this extraordinary accolade that will be celebrated within the University, across the city and beyond.’

The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire’s new building boasts five new public performance spaces, including a 500-seat concert hall, a 150-seat recital hall and a 100-seat organ studio, as well as a flexible black-box studio, more than 70 teaching practice rooms, and the first permanent jazz space in any UK conservatoire.

www.bcu.ac.uk/conservatoire

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