COURSE OVERVIEW

The BA (Hons) Creative Musicianship degree is a highly flexible and interdisciplinary programme that moulds itself around you and your artistic journey, not the other way around. You’ll dive into a fascinating array of creative areas and build the foundations of your portfolio career in music, allowing you to pursue multiple career paths simultaneously and develop a wide range of transferable skills.

Musically inspired creatives of all kinds are welcome to join our Creative Musicianship programme, including artists, producers, songwriters, and performers who play any instrument. Our team of expert tutor-mentors will empower you to choose your own path, discover and nurture your creative identity, and broaden your horizons in line with your own interests.

No matter your goal as a creative musician, this degree will equip you with all the tools you need to succeed. You’ll learn how to connect technique and music theory, develop and refine your creative process, analyse and reimagine conventional music genres, and write and play live with groups of your peers. Along the way, you’ll gradually create an industry-standard portfolio of your own original music, acquiring all the songwriting, composition, and arrangement chops it takes to make it happen.

Throughout the Creative Musicianship programme, we’ll encourage you to question established ideas and articulate your own decisions and discoveries. Our team also curates an exclusive Creative Musicianship events programme, featuring guest lectures and masterclasses from renowned musicians, artists, and industry insiders, who all actively work on the cutting edge of music.

Music technology also plays a central role in this course, from the inner workings of the recording studio to the lighting and video rigs found in performance venues across the world. You’ll sharpen your skills using the latest gadgets and gear – and as this course moulds itself around you, you’ll be actively encouraged to experiment with every piece of tech you come across. You’ll find innovative ways to turn your visions into reality, both in the studio and onstage.

Across the whole Creative Musicianship degree, you’ll plug into equipment provided by the likes of Apple, Boss, Shure, Korg, Yamaha, Orange, Ableton, Audient and Zildjian. Our Tech Hub will give you access to over 1,000 pieces of gear, all kept up to date and in line with professional industry standards.

Every creative musician is also an entrepreneur – and with this in mind, our select team of successful industry specialists will show you exactly how the music business works. We’ll break down all the key concepts, and explain how they fit together. You’ll cover recorded and live music, publishing, marketing strategies, and everything you need to know about building your own unique and thriving business.

By the time you graduate from ICMP, you’ll be able to confidently forge a successful and durable music career that perfectly fits your creative identity. To determine the course of your own evolution, click the “Apply Now” button below.

Apply to study at ICMP via UCAS

UK Students - Apply via UCAS

If you’d like to study with us next year, then you’ll need to start thinking about submitting your UCAS application. The deadline for degree applications is 6pm, Wednesday 15th January 2021. UCAS codes for this programme are:  Course Code: W3C5 | Institution Code: i25
UCAS Application Information

Fees & Funding

2021/22 Course Fees: £9,250 (UK & EU Students) | £13,000 (International Students)

Please visit our Fees page for information on access to Student Loans. Please note, UK and EU students eligible for Loans are able to borrow the full course fee for ICMP degrees, unlike many other UK music schools where students are required to pay additional top-up fees themselves.

Full Fees Information | Full Programme Specification

uel-logo-uel-blue.png

Successful completion of the BA (Hons) Creative Musicianship course at ICMP London leads to the award of Bachelor of Arts by the University of East London.

The Creative Musicianship course sums up all I have wished for. Creativity, diversity, production, marketing - all the tools I need to start my career in the music industry."

Victor Pascal
BA (Hons) Creative Musicianship

BOOK A VIRTUAL OPEN DAY

UCAS CODES

Key facts

  • This course moulds itself around you, not the other way around
  • Empowers you to build the foundations of a durable and flexible portfolio career that fits you perfectly
  • Develop your creative identity
  • Open to all musical creatives, including artists, producers, songwriters, and performers who play any instrument
  • Comprehensive curriculum that encompasses creative work, performance, production, business and entrepreneurship
  • Personalised, self-directed and progressive degree, rooted in academic rigour
  • Tailored to reflect the modern music and wider creative industries
  • Collaborate, create, and perform with your peers
  • Exclusive events programme, including guest lectures and masterclasses
  • Central London campus puts the core of the British music industry on your doorstep
  • Grow your own unique network of contacts, collaborators, and friends across the London music scene
  • Taught by a select and successful team of expert tutor-mentors in a creative and inspiring learning environment
  • Experiment with state-of-the-art equipment and the latest upgrades
  • Optimal class sizes guarantee a high number of teaching contact hours
  • Career support never stops, even after you graduate
  • BOOK 121 with tutor

Student Stories

Ella Eliza

Ella discusses how her BA Creative Musicianship degree is fuelling her creativity.

 

COURSE DETAILS

Year 1 (Level 4)

Year 2 (Level 5)

Year 3 (Level 6)

Your first year on the course provides a detailed introduction to life as a musical creative. Working both independently and collaboratively, you’ll develop and articulate your own creative process, learn to combine music theory and technique in creative contexts, perform in professional environments, work to industry-standard briefs, and master the core components of the music business.

Performance Practice (40 credits)

You’ll work to industry-relevant stylistic briefs during this module, composing and performing collaboratively with other musicians. This will develop your ability to compose and arrange original music, perform in a live professional environment, collaborate, understand genre conventions and how they can be manipulated/reimagined for contemporary audiences. You’ll also be able to apply the skills gained from your other modules, thus reinforcing and expanding your skillset.

Exploring Creativity (20 credits)

This module explores a range of creative processes, both collaborative and independent. You’ll learn how to develop and articulate your creative consciousness, understand how your own creativity fits into a wider intellectual, academic, and music industry context, and create ongoing works in progress. As there are no “mistakes” in creativity, you’ll be free to push beyond your comfort zone and learn from your experiments. You’ll also be able to share your works with peers and tutors, and reflect upon your discoveries.

Exploring Creative Technology (20 credits)

In conjunction with Exploring Creativity, this module will show you how to capture and develop creative ideas using a range of professional tools and methods. You’ll also learn how to construct melodic, harmonic, and rhythmic patterns while exploring structural forms, considering how those forms relate to the content of musical works, and producing your own portfolio of original material.

Musical Language & Technique (20 credits)

This module will cover theoretical and practical approaches and strategies you can use when making music. You’ll look at compositional components, technical and creative writing methods, technique (and how it informs your creative practice), and the application of theoretical concepts within a practical context. By learning to integrate musical language and technique into your own creative process, you’ll become a highly effective and authoritative musician.

The Music Industry (20 credits)

The music industry contains three main interconnected sectors (recorded music, live music, and publishing). This module explores the above in detail, including revenue streams, artist management, A&R, marketing, promotion, sales, distribution, copyright, royalties, collection societies, membership organisations and trade bodies. By understanding these key areas alongside current industry practices, the evolution of the music business, and predicted future developments, you will be able to develop a durable, long-term portfolio career.

Year 2 builds upon the modules completed in Year 1, progressing into advanced concepts and encouraging greater creative freedom. You’ll also explore the complete music production process, experiment with performance technology, and acquire all the marketing know-how you’ll need to stand out in your future career.

Performance Practice II (40 credits)

In order to increase your collaborative confidence, you will apply your understanding of styles and genres to broader, more conceptual industry-relevant briefs, and learn to justify your creative choices. As well as covering composition, arrangement, the application/manipulation of musical conventions, collaboration, developing your “voice” as a musician, and individual and group performances, this module also explores performance technology and lighting/video – allowing you to apply the skills you’ve developed through other modules to new challenges.

Creative Practice (20 credits)

During this module, you’ll learn to further develop and articulate your creative process, enhance your critical listening and mixing skills, and incorporate non-musical ideals into your process. This will enable you to place your creative process within a wider music industry context, discern links between process and outcome, and integrate theoretical processes into your own practice.

Creative Production (20 credits)

Building on the topics covered in Creative Application, you’ll develop your production skills and learn how to turn your ideas into completed tracks. This module covers editing (and its relation to the creative process), mixing, mastering, analysis, ear training, critical listening, studio orchestration, and how to justify your production choices.

Musical Language & Technique II (20 credits)

This module covers an advanced range of practical, conceptual, and theoretical approaches to music-making. You’ll create a portfolio of original music, explore advanced compositional components, apply music theory in a variety of practical contexts, analyse your musical ideas, and enhance your ability to make decisions during the compositional process. You’ll also be able to effectively communicate musical ideas through writing, in the form of an essay.

Marketing Strategies (20 credits)

Success as a freelance musician depends on your ability to sell yourself and your services. With that in mind, this module covers fundamental marketing principles, traditional marketing theories, and contemporary marketing approaches and tools. This includes branding, advertising, promotion, pricing, distribution, PR, positioning, consumer behaviour, social media, competition, innovation, audience-building, viral marketing, building an online presence, market research, analysis, and product development and life cycles. At the end of this module, you’ll develop a fully assessed marketing plan.

During your third and final year, you’ll learn everything you need to know about business and entrepreneurship and create a professional self-directed business plan. You’ll also create an industry-standard portfolio of original music, complete a creative project of your own choosing, and receive all the additional support required to make something you’ll be proud of. You’ll finish your course fully prepared to begin a new life as a successful creative expert.

Creative Project (40 credits)

During this module, you will develop your creative and commercial skills to the professional standards required to plan, develop, and manage a convincing and cohesive catalogue of original works. Topics covered include songwriting, composition, setting and developing your creative direction, critical reflection and discussion, A&R practices, and academic, commercial, and cultural frames of reference. You will be assessed using a portfolio of original music, and a critical commentary that places your work in an appropriate context.

Professional Practice (40 credits)

Using the skills you’ve developed throughout the Creative Musicianship programme, you’ll identify and plan a career-focused project of your own, and complete it to a professional standard. To do this, you’ll study collaborative practices, planning and pitching skills, project management, research methodologies, and how the relevance, influence, and impact of your project relates to its audience and wider context. Module assessment will involve a 12-minute project pitch, and the creation of a full project portfolio.

Creative Entrepreneurship I (20 credits)

An understanding of key entrepreneurial concepts, principles, and strategies is essential for success in music. These include research, analysis, evaluation, ideation, strategy, creating and communicating value, distribution channels, business models, marketing concepts, and successfully acquiring funding and other resources. This module covers all of the above, culminating in the presentation and assessment of a “real-world” business pitch to a potential backer/investor.

Creative Entrepreneurship II (20 credits)

You will design, structure, and execute the process of launching a new creative industry business during this module. This will involve writing a fully assessed business plan, and exploring legal considerations, ethics, ownership structures, intellectual property, time management, industry regulations, financial planning, funding options, costing and budgets, marketing and implementation strategies, professional presentation, and project management. By developing an advanced understanding of the above, you will be fully prepared to launch your own creative business.

TEACHING, LEARNING AND ASSESSMENT

You will be taught at our campus in Kilburn, utilising our live rooms, tech suites and in-house music studio facilities as well as classrooms and lecture rooms. You will have access to use these facilities outside of class time while you are a student at ICMP in order to rehearse and record your music.

Your learning will be in small mixed groups for seminars and small workshop groups for practical skills. Some lectures are in larger groups.

You will have access to the Student Services Department for support and advice concerning welfare, finance, personal development, safeguarding etc. You'll also have access to our Professional Development team ‘The Hub, who provide bespoke music industry careers advice and access to unique industry opportunities.

As a student of UEL you will also enjoy access to a range of UEL facilities, including the 24/7 multimedia libraries, with over 300,000 books, journals, audio-visual resources and archives, 500 electronic books and 25,000 electronic journals and databases.

Teaching and Learning

On the BA (Hons) Creative Musicianship you will be taught through a variety of lectures, seminars, workshops and tutorials. The programme has a particular focus on project work, both collaborative and individual, centred around creating and performing music.

When not attending lectures, seminars or other timetabled sessions you'll be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, and preparing coursework assignments.Your independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities, including our Learning Resource Centre, our many performance and practice rooms, and well-equipped tech suites.

Throughout the duration of your course your time will be split as follows:

Teaching, Learning and Assessment hours per year
Year 1: 392hrs | Year 2: 350hrs | Year 3: 252hrs

Self-study hours per year
Year 1: 808hrs | Year 2: 850hrs | Year 3: 948hrs

Assessment

Your knowledge and thinking will be assessed through coursework, presentations and demonstrations. Your practical skills will be assessed through performances and coursework, and your skills for life and work will be assessed through coursework and presentations.

The assessment breakdown of this programme is:

Year 1: 100% Coursework
Year 2: 100% Coursework
Year 3: 100% Coursework

ENTRY REQUIREMENTS

Applicants will typically have A levels, BTEC Diploma or Extended Diploma or International Baccalaureate equivalent to 80 UCAS points , or an ICMP Higher Diploma.

In addition, you should hold a GCSE Grade C or 4 or above in English, or suitable equivalent, such as Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Adult Literacy/Numeracy.

International students will typically hold a relevant equivalent qualification – please check your qualification with our Admissions Team. In addition, you should hold a relevant English language qualification equivalent to CEFR Level B2.

We also welcome applications from mature applicants who may have no formal qualifications but who can nevertheless demonstrate their suitability for study through appropriate skills and experience.

This course is also available as a one-year Cert HE option.

UCAS code W3C5Uni code i25

HOW TO APPLY

 Please apply via  the "APPLY NOW" link  below.

At any time during the application process if you need help or further advice just contact our Admissions team who will be happy to assist you. 



By phone:
020 7328 0222

By email:
enquiries@icmp.ac.uk

or

Tutors

Tim ElsenburgSongwriting

Tim Elsenburg is a producer, songwriter, and musician, currently working on projects in all those fields. His band, Sweet Billy Pilgrim, was nominated for a Mercury Music award in 2009, getting lots of national coverage as the “band who made an album in their garden shed”. Sweet Billy Pilgrim have released three critically acclaimed albums, toured with artists as diverse as Jamie Cullum, Portico Quartet and Field Music, Malian singer Rokia Traoré, The Futureheads, and performed with The Who at the Royal Albert Hall.
Tim Elsenburg | Songwriting Tutor | ICMP London

Lisa CannySongwriting

Lisa Canny is an award-winning songwriter, a Top Ten recording artist, and a first class Ethnomusicology Masters graduate. Hailing from County Mayo, on the west coast of Ireland, she has been obsessed with traditional Irish music since early childhood. Dubbed “Ireland’s next big female artist” by Miles Copeland of The Police, she has performed live in front of thousands-strong crowds and worked with some of the biggest songwriters in the business.
Lisa Canny | Songwriting Tutor | ICMP London

Jason BavanandanSongwriting

Jason Bavanandan is a songwriter, composer, and multi-instrumentalist with over a decade’s experience working with major record labels. As the singer and songwriter in the band Battle, he released two albums, enjoyed chart success and touring throughout Europe and America. Jason is now a professional songwriter, signed to Sony/ATV, the world’s largest publishing company. His 2015 album, Whiplash, became ‘the first cinematically-released album in history’. Composed, performed, and orchestrally scored entirely by Jason himself.
Jason Bavanandan | Songwriting Tutor | ICMP London

Lorenzo De Feo Music Production

A musician by trade, Lorenzo De Feo plays guitar, bass, and drums. Lorenzo started work in the music industry as a session musician for pop acts including Mel C, X Factor’s Matt Cardle and Andrea Begley, touring throughout the UK and Europe. Swapping the stage for the studio, he now spends the majority of his time writing, composing, and recording. Lorenzo runs a busy studio in the Hertfordshire countryside where he is the resident producer, working with a range of acts, from solo artists to bands, spanning a broad spectrum of genres.
Lorenzo De Feo | Music Production | ICMP London

Luke TomsSongwriting

Luke is a singer-songwriter, producer, and composer with over ten years of industry experience. He's signed major deals with Island Records and EMI Music publishing, and also toured extensively – both independently and with such artists as Mika, The Feeling, The Zutons, Nerina Pallot, and many more. As a producer and composer, Luke has written extensively for TV and film, with many works published through Sony ATV.
Luke Toms | Songwriting Tutor | ICMP London

Erika FootmanVocal

Erika Footman is a highly experienced songwriter and performer. When she's not on the road singing and playing with world-famous pop/rock groups, she runs her own record label, working with renowned writing and production teams. Erika has toured the world as backing vocalist to chart-topping British pop sensation, Mika, appearing at numerous international festivals, and performing on TV shows such as Jools Holland, Letterman, and the X-Factor. She's also toured with indie rock group Skunk Anansie, singing guest vocals on their 2012 album Black Traffic, and appeared as guest vocalist on Bastille's Mix Tapes.
Erika Footman | Vocal Tutor | ICMP London

Nathan WilliamsBass

Having worked with the likes of Gruff Rhys, Joss Stone, Huw Warren and Herbie Flowers, Nathan is comfortable working in all contemporary genres and performance situations on bass, drums, keys, guitar and voice. He is an accomplished composer and arranger of both commissioned work and original repertoire. His unique approach to bass playing has earned him endorsements with Cort basses and Ampeg amplification. In 2017, Nathan joined the touring band of the internationally renowned Jamiroquai.
Nathan Williams | Bass Tutor | ICMP London

Mark RobertsDrums

Drumming professionally since the age of 18, Mark Roberts is a highly respected drummer and educator, known for seamlessly merging technical ability with musicality. Mark has over 25 years teaching experience and has taught many of the UK’s current most prominent drummers, placing particular emphasis on technique, individual musicality and personal playing style.
Mark Roberts | Drum Tutor | ICMP London

Audrey RileyOther instrument

Audrey Riley is a composer, cellist, arranger, and conductor with close to 200 album credits to her name. For over two decades, she has worked at the very highest levels of the music industry producing an exceedingly diverse body of work, from conducting the orchestra of La Scala in Milan to playing cello with Blur, Nick Cave, and the Foo Fighters. Early recording credits include stints with industrial music legends Test Dept., Paul Weller’s The Style Council, and film soundtrack composer Simon Fisher Turner.
Audrey Riley | Arranging Tutor | ICMP London