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OPERA 360:


Course Overview

Launching for the first time in September 2022, Opera 360 is a unique, industry-led, digital course that invites both opera lovers and arts professionals alike to gain unrivalled, behind the scenes knowledge of the opera industry. This online-taught programme offers detailed investigation into both the artistic and administrative practices of the industry, with live seminars from illustrious opera insiders.

Participants can choose to undertake one of two course pathways:

  • Short Course: individual modules can be chosen that represent particular personal interest, which can be undertaken as stand-alone learning

  • Masters course: the completion of six modules is required from the Music & Drama and Industry Practice clusters (a minimum of two modules from each), along with the 20-credit Research Skills module and the 40-credit Major Project. Modules can be completed on a full or part time basis.

This course is designed for those united by their passion for opera; whether it’s to develop a deeper understanding of the subject through the eyes of insiders or wishing to strengthen their knowledge as part of their professional development.

Individuals can fully immerse themselves in the subject and create their own ways of flexible participation. All modules are delivered digitally with a large proportion of live, interactive lectures and Q&As. We encourage participants to attend the real-time sessions to maximise interactivity but offer the flexibility of accessing the recorded content at a later, suitable time to ensure accessibility for international students and those with other commitments.

  • Flexible programme delivered exclusively online in association with the David Seligman Opera School

  • Lectures, seminars and tutorials with a core team of experienced opera professionals, along with guest presentations and question-and-answer sessions with opera insiders

  • Individual mentoring support provided through digital platforms

  • Examining standard working practices within opera, as well as time dedicated to looking at the issues facing the industry today

  • Tuition will be provided in critical skills and analytical skills which will be essential to respond to the fast-changing contemporary environment

  • Research methodology training appropriate for the opera industry

  • Opportunities to observe rehearsals for current opera productions

  • The course is predicated on the distinctive interdisciplinary strength of RWCMD: its deep relationship with the professional creative industries, and the fact that it is one of few places in the UK where music, drama, opera, musical theatre, technical theatre, design, arts management, and others, all come together in a spirit of collegiality and collaboration, mirroring the industries which the College supports

  • RWCMD’s conservatoire approach which combines both music and drama training, provides a unique opportunity to be fully immersed in each element of opera production at the highest level

  • Opportunity to examine the role that opera companies play within the community

  • Focus on employability and transferable skills

  • Access to a digital library of resources

  • As well as being suitable for recent graduates and those already in the industry, the course is also suitable for those with a passion for opera, providing each individual with the opportunity to fully immerse themselves in the subject and create their own ways of participating

Module Information

Each of the core modules is 20 credits and takes 15 weeks to complete.

Students can take individual modules without undertaking the whole degree, or instead take a cluster of modules leading to a Graduate Certificate (60 credits), or a Graduate Diploma (120 credits). Please note that for the Diploma, at least two modules must be taken from each of the clusters: Music & Drama and Industry Practice for completion.

These options make it possible for those already in employment, perhaps in the opera industry, to take particular modules that might be especially relevant to their current practice and employer’s needs.

Masters students will need to complete a total of six modules from the Music & Drama and Industry Practice clusters (a minimum of two modules from each), along with the 20-credit Research Skills module and the 40-credit Major Project.

If there are insufficient numbers of students interested in a module, this may not be offered. If a module will not run, we will advise students as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

Industry Practice

Music & Drama

* The optional module included for those students who would like to improve this skill.

Course Structure

Please note that, while the information below reflects the programme offered to date, it may be subject to amendment and change in future years. Students are always consulted on such change and details are made available to applicants holding offers.


Download a detailed overview of this course (PDF)


Further information

You can request a brochure and confirm your place at a live Q&A with course tutor James Lea on Monday 6th December by emailing the Admissions team:

Entry Requirements

Normal entry requirements include a 2:2 degree in any subject. The College also considers applications from people who have been working in the opera industry, usually with at least two years’ relevant experience. For those not in the industry, equivalent professional experience will also be considered.

All applicants are expected to be able to demonstrate a good understanding of the opera field.

Final selection is made on the basis of an interview.


International applicants whose first language is not English will need to demonstrate that their English language ability meets the College’s minimum requirements. Please refer to our English Language Requirements page for details of accepted English language tests and required scores.

Tuition Fees for 2023-2024

* This amount is for the first year only. The tuition fee payable in the second year is subject to an annual increase.

Students studying part time (3-5 years) or taking individual modules pay per module and these fees are subject to an annual increase. For students studying and completing modules in the academic year 2022/23, the cost per 20-credit module is £1,000 and the cost per 40-credit module is £2,000.

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