Last updated: 1 year ago

A varied course which incorporates a wide range of approaches to thinking about and understanding music, particularly focusing on history, analysis, composition and performance.

Course Resources

Here are some general resources related to Music.


Overview 🔗 This is the Music section of the University undergraduate prospectus. The most important information about the course is here, including entry requirements, course structure, and prerequisites.

Faculty website 🔗 This is the official Faculty webpage for prospective undergraduates, which links to various resources. The most important of them is the Faculty of Music undergraduate handbook 🔗 🌟, which gives a general overview of what studying Music at Cambridge is like.

Unofficial Prospectus 🔗 This is an unofficial prospectus put together by the Cambridge University Student Union; it’s written based on students’ perspectives and gives a better sense of what the day-to-day experience as a Music student is like, compared to official materials.

More things to explore

One key element of the Cambridge Music course is a compulsory paper entitled ‘Music and Musicology Today’, which essentially focuses on the overarching question of ‘how do music and musical performance make meaning in society today?’. In preparation for this, consider the influence of gender, language, race, sexuality and time on a variety of genres and styles of music. The suggested preliminary materials recommend a variety of twenty-first century examples, ranging from Kaija Saariaho’s ‘Circle Map’ to Beyonce’s ‘Lemonade’!

First year students will also study a period of Western music history, taking into account changes in compositional style as well as historical and cultural contexts. These texts may provide a useful introduction:
Thomas Christensen’s ‘The Cambridge History of Western Music Theory’
Richard Taruskin’s ‘The Oxford History of Western Music’ (volumes 2 and 3)

HE+ Music 🔗 🌟 This website is written by Cambridge academics and research students, so would strongly recommend taking a look at some of the activities and resources.

The Musical Environment website 🔗 The Musical Environment provides information on the huge range of groups and societies for musical performance and appreciation on offer in Cambridge.

Music at Cambridge research blog 🔗 This research blog is a great way not only to find out about the work being undertaken at Cambridge, but to learn more about the incredible diversity of music as an academic subject.

Faculty of Music YouTube Channel 🔗 The Faculty of Music YouTube channel contains talks, performances and Q&A sessions with academics and visiting musicians.

Application Resources

Reading Lists 🔗 These are the reading lists for the papers that first-years take. Don’t be intimidated by how long they are; they’re intended to be worked through over the course of a full academic year, and honestly no one reads everything anyway.

Reading list for prospective students 🔗 written for any student planning to study philosophy at university

FAQ 🔗 🌟 Some useful answers to common questions about the application process.

InsideUni Music interview experiences 🔗 🌟 Current students talk about their interview experience, as well as sharing some tips. We’re biased, but we think they’re useful!