Skip to main content


The Cambridge Music Course

The Music course at Cambridge is designed to introduce students not just to a range of music, but to a wide variety of ways of thinking about and understanding music. At first the focus is on the skills needed for university-level music studies, with a solid grounding in the techniques and history of the Western musical tradition, as well as an understanding of the many roles music plays in today’s world.  As a student progresses through the course there is increasing freedom to take specialised courses in different kinds of music, or approaches to it.

Though the course has a strong academic component, students can choose to study performance and composition in all three years, and can choose to spend most of their final year working with individual staff members on their own analytical, historical or compositional projects. The Music Department has an online undergraduate prospectus.

Why Study Music at Corpus?

The musical scene at Corpus is very lively and well-supported.  The College Music Society, the Bene’t Club, organises a number of Chamber concerts, organ recitals, solo instrumental series and usually two orchestral concerts a year. The Master also has a regularly series of informal concerts in the lodge. We have two Fellows in music at Corpus. Nick Danks is a graduate of Corpus and teaches both at the College and for the Music Faculty, specialising in Harmony and Counterpoint and Keyboard Skills. Dr. Rachel Adelstein is an ethnomusicologist, who has written about music and the memory of the Holocaust. She is especially interested in contemporary Jewish liturgical music, as well as artistic expressions of Jewish feminism and American vernacular musics. Nick Danks is our Director of Music

Corpus Chapel Choir
The choir is conducted and accompanied by the organ scholars under the supervision of the Director of Music, and leads worship in the Chapel at two services on Sundays, at Evensong on Wednesdays, and on special occasions throughout the year.  It is made up of students who hold choral awards boosted by some trialled volunteers.  All members are encouraged to take singing lessons, for which some assistance is available from the College.

Music Facilities
Upright pianos are provided, free of charge, in their rooms for students reading Music and Organ Scholars have Steinway pianos in their rooms.  In addition, the Chapel piano, a first class Steinway grand, a Yamaha grand in the McCrum Theatre and a Waldstein upright are available for students for practice.

Music Awards
Corpus participates fully in the Organ, Choral and Instrumental Awards Schemes.  There are usually two organ scholars and several choral and instrumental award holders amongst our students.  Further details can be found on the Music Awards page of the University website.

What do we look for?

Our typical standard offer for music is A*AA or the equivalent, and Corpus will consider an application with Grade 8 theory in place of Music A-Level. Candidates who are selected for interview will sit a college registered written assessment as well as submitting at least one piece of written work.