Duration:
2 years full-time for FdA (Foundation Degree)

Upon successful completion of this course you'll have the option to join our BA (Hons) Music Performance and top up to a Level 6 qualification. Find out more about topping up your degree.

Location:
Confetti, Nottingham

UCAS course code:
W310

Institution code:
N91 (Nottingham Trent University)

  • 64 UCAS Tariff points; and
  • GCSE - English and Maths Grade C / 4
  • Should include a related music qualification such as BTEC Music Performance or similar (eg RSL or A Level Music)

To find out what qualifications have tariff points, please use our tariff calculator.

You will also need to have a Voice or Instrument Grade 5 (ABRSM, RSL, Trinity or equivalent)

We very much welcome self-taught applicants who do not have the formal entry requirements, but we need to know you're at the right level to support your ambition. If that’s you, we’ll request a video of you playing 2 songs from start to finish in contrasting styles. This can be performing along to a backing track, or solo. Once we get that, and we make sure this is the perfect fit for you, we'll send you an offer!

International qualifications

We accept qualifications from all over the world – check yours here:

English language entry requirements

You can meet our language requirements by successfully completing our pre-sessional English course for an agreed length of time, or by submitting the required grade in one of our accepted English language tests, such as IELTS:

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors. Find out more about advisors in your country.

This degree is validated by Nottingham Trent University. You can apply through UCAS.

For tuition fee costs, visit our fees & funding page for more information.

Additional Costs

Your course fees cover the cost of studies, and include loads of great benefits, such as the use of our library, support from our expert Employability team, and free use of the IT equipment across our campuses.

A budget of £250 would be appropriate for most audio and music software. External storage media to save large amounts of data from audio sessions (£50).

Library books

Most study modules will recommend one or more core text books, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary and further information is available in the University’s bookshop, Blackwell’s. Our libraries provide a good supply of essential text books, journals and materials (many of which you can access online) – meaning you may not need to purchase as many books as you might think. There may also be a supply of second-hand books available for purchase from previous year students.

Field trips

All essential field trip costs will be included in your course fees. There may be the opportunity to take part in optional field trips, which do incur additional costs.

Print and copy costs

The University allocates an annual printing and copying allowance of £20 depending on the course you are studying. For more details about costs for additional print and copying required over and above the annual allowance please see the Printing, photocopying and scanning information on the Library website.

Music has seamlessly woven its way into games, fashion, film, television, events, and social media like never before. Today's aspiring popular music-makers must possess the ability to collaborate and adapt to new levels, and Confetti provides its popular music students with innovative, high-quality, practical degrees that reflect the needs of the modern, integrated global entertainment industry.

Developing the technical mastery of your instrument or voice is at the core of your studies. You will hone your skills as a musician through popular music performance, recording, production, and songwriting. In addition, you will study how popular music has developed, both as an art form and business, into the global industry it is today.

Our exceptional staff comprises working professionals who are experts in the music and creative industries. Their extensive experience will guide and inspire you, ensuring you receive an education that is unparalleled in its depth and relevance.

Confetti has world-class, industry-approved, state-of-the-art facilities featuring incredible recording studio spaces, Mac suites, rehearsal rooms, and its own purpose-built live venue. There simply couldn't be a better environment for you to study what you love.

But the Confetti experience extends far beyond our remarkable facilities. Here, you will immerse yourself in an unrivalled network of industry connections. From engaging with our esteemed experts in your daily classes to being inspired by a diverse range of guest speakers during Confetti's Industry Week, you will have countless opportunities to expand your horizons and forge invaluable relationships.

Confetti is the perfect platform to start building your professional network and shaping your future career.

91% of students would recommend studying at Confetti (National Student Survey 2023)

Teaching and learning are designed around developing your practical and technical skills, whilst also enhancing your critical and analytical thinking.

Classes are a mixture of rehearsals, live performances, workshops, seminars and tutorials. During these sessions you will develop your expertise, working alongside Confetti’s expert tutors who are active professional musicians who have performed with some of the world’s biggest artists on some of the world’s biggest stages, such as Glastonbury.

The course will involve a number of performances at a wide range of events, at both local and nationally recognised venues, such as Splendour. In some modules you’ll work on ‘live’ projects, where you’ll be required to complete work for industry clients, giving you the opportunity to demonstrate your developing professionalism and build a portfolio of work that will support your future career.

Guest lectures from professional musicians, promoters and producers will also help enhance your knowledge and experience of the music industry. In addition, you’ll have direct access to our very own in-house record label and artists management company Denizen who will offer help and guidance throughout your studies.

Trips

There are opportunities to go on some great trips during your studies, too. Take a look at one of our past trips where students visited Tileyard Studios.

Assessment is 100% through coursework. You will receive feedback throughout.

Forms of assessment include:

  • practical tests
  • written research
  • technical papers
  • presentations
  • independently led coursework
  • projects

To progress through the course you must achieve 120 credit points each year. Your final degree mark will be based 100% on your final year work.

A two year Foundation degree is a great choice if you want to have the option to graduate with a Level 5 qualification and start your creative career early. With an accessible UCAS tariff – this type of degree is perfect for you if you prefer a more practical approach to your studies.

After completing two years you will graduate with an FdSc/FdA qualification and choose whether you want to continue and enroll on a top up year for a full BSc/BA qualification or whether you would rather stop your education and start your creative career.

Topping up your existing qualification

Each case will be considered individually, but if you have passed an FdA from Confetti and decided you want to continue your studies, you’re automatically entitled to enter into the 3rd year of the equivalent BA degree to ‘top up’ to a full honours degree.

What you'll study in year 1

Digital Audio Workstations (DAWs) are the digital canvases you will need to navigate to put down, cultivate, and develop musical ideas throughout your career. In this module, you will learn and apply different DAW techniques to create and arrange music through a series of set tasks, thereby developing a skills portfolio that you can apply throughout your course and career. You will build upon these skills to support your song writing module, generate ideas, and understand their role in a wide range of applications.

This is what it's all about: the skill and the art of performance! This module will help develop your core instrumental and performance skills, focusing on the deployment of key areas of instrumental/vocal technique, use and application of rhythm, groove, communication and creativity.

You'll develop as a performer by learning techniques to effectively engage, enthuse and captivate an audience. You will analyse classic and contemporary material and discover the key elements that makes it work so well.

Ultimately, you'll employ your findings by performing sets of covers and collectively created compositions using the elements explored throughout this module.

You will explore contexts of working in the international world of sound and music and how you might establish a career by exploring the flow of money through the industry and relevant current and emerging trends.

You'll assess your current skill set and discover what you need to do to improve your chances of success on your employable journey. You'll choose work like briefs lasting at least 80 hours to enable you to experience working opportunities in a field of interest, then reflect on your learning to set you up for the rest of your course in an employable mind set. Your future starts now!

This module aims to build an understanding of the theory and context of songwriting. You will explore classic songs from the history of popular music and, through deconstructing them, discover the component parts and common techniques used to create great material!

By embracing this process, your aural perception skills, music theory, instrument, and arrangement skills will naturally develop. You will then apply these skills to recreate classic tracks and collaborate with others to write songs based on these techniques and genre-specific elements.

Throughout the module, you will study different approaches to the craft, working both individually and collaboratively on assigned briefs. This will enable you to create a body of work that demonstrates a growing understanding of music genres through your songwriting skills.

In this module, you'll explore key events, songs and artists that helped shape the history of popular music as we know it. You'll gain an understanding of the social and cultural contexts that have guided its development, whilst you are supported in developing your research skills to explore case studies.

Songs and artists you investigate will be analysed, and material rehearsed and performed in your song writing and performance sessions. This means you're fully immersed in a whole host of material and styles to help you be an informed, well-rounded musician.

What you'll study in year 2

Progressing from Year 1, you will engage in playing more complex material, conducting deeper analysis of the component parts, and exploring the most effective ways of communicating them to your peers and ultimately, an audience! You will perform original material and rework classic songs, adapting them to the sound and style of specified genres.

Technical proficiency on your instrument will be further advanced and developed throughout this process. You will receive guidance in stagecraft and setlist design techniques, aiming to build performer confidence and learn how to professionally entertain and engage a live audience with a powerful performance.

You'll develop your songwriting skills further by dissecting more complex songs from a wide array of genres to understand what makes them successful. You'll participate in a series of workshops where you'll practice various working methodologies to write material, both in solo and collaborative scenarios.

You'll explore top line, rhythmic, melodic, and lyrical methods, equipping you with the tools you need to hold your own in any songwriting session. Effective communication of ideas is essential for any collaborative process including working with other musicians who bring your ideas to life.

You'll learn how to communicate arrangements and ideas effectively using rhythmic and harmonic notation, chord symbols, and lyric/chord guides, and apply them to real-world scenarios.

This module focuses on exploring the exciting world of composing for media. Building on your compositional and DAW skills from year one, you will utilise them in a variety of real-world scenarios to create music for media use. These may include jingles, genre-based library music, and music for film and other media.

You will examine and research these areas, gaining insight into how best to apply your current DAW knowledge with other tools and techniques and expand on that skillset by successfully completing example scenarios. Composing for media is a substantial part of today's industry and an area in which you should be well prepared to engage.

This is where the reality of being a freelance practitioner really comes into focus. During this module, you will source and manage appropriate self-directed projects of at least 20 hours in an area that aligns to your career aspiration, working individually and collaboratively, applying the research, knowledge, and skills learnt throughout the course in common real-world scenarios.

You will also be given a further 80 hours of relevant industry briefs over the year to complete and reflect on. The aim is to develop your overall professionalism and provide you with the knowledge and resources to begin a career in the creative industries which are increasingly defined by freelance and self-employed models of work.

Projects can cover a wide range of scenarios, and you must be able to adapt quickly, spinning a number of plates at once. You will need to work under pressure to strict deadlines and learn how to manage your time and resources effectively whilst looking after the wellbeing of yourself and your collaborators.

You’ll explore relevant legal frameworks such as copyright and intellectual property and examine how money flows in your particular area of interest so you’re best placed to exploit your talents for financial sustainable gain.

Music plays an integral part in everyday life across cultures and societies. It can transcend language and cultural barriers and influence individual and social identity, politics, fashion and technology.
This module offers a deeper understanding of the contexts in which music is created, performed, received and how it has evolved or influenced social change.

You will delve into various musical genres, styles, and traditions across different time periods and cultures. The module aims to enhance critical thinking and analytical skills by examining the social, political, and artistic influences that shape musical practices.

You will also develop your research and communication abilities as you explore and present your findings on significant musical works, composers, and movements. The skills you develop in this module will help you as a working musician: broadening your musical horizons and giving you the skills to argue your ideas, understanding the role of music in the wider world.

This module serves as the recording musician's toolkit. The landscape for a recording musician is no longer limited to the traditional bigger studio 'Session' setup. Home studio setups have now become a significant part of the instrument recording business, catering to clients and session briefs that include songwriters, producers, library companies, film/TV soundtracks, content creators, as well as your own projects.

The module covers both larger studio ensemble recording and remote recording. You will learn the fundamental processes of recording and producing your own instrument or voice. This includes how to communicate properly with a client, audio file management, and selecting the appropriate gear and processes that meet the needs of any given recording scenario you may encounter as a jobbing musician.

You will also develop skills in critically comparing recording equipment across different budget points, audio engineering skills, understanding group recording etiquette, maintaining session structure and energy, effectively communicating with producers, and fostering repeat business.

Study Music Performance with us and you'll learn in our very own live music and events venue, Metronome.

With its unrivalled reputation for the quality of its sound and visuals, Metronome hosts a successful commercial programme of live events throughout the year – and it’s here where you’ll learn from the best and gain real work experience.

This world-class venue is home to some amazing facilities, jampacked with recording studios, rehearsal rooms, performances spaces, and a 400-capacity venue.

Splendour

Each year, countless Confetti students ‘Do It For Real’ both on stage and behind-the-scenes, helping to bring Splendour Festival to life.

If you want to do more than just study a qualification, ‘Do It For Real’ at Confetti. This is our commitment to all our students to provide real, creative, hands-on experience in their chosen specialism whilst accessing the best facilities.

Metronome

Metronome is a national centre for music, moving image, video games, live performance and spoken word - and it's part of Confetti. Our students have access to state-of-the-art studios within Metronome, as well as the 400-capacity venue where free student membership gets you exclusive ticket deals and offers.

Guest speakers

Throughout the year, students are able to attend talks and events, and work on projects with visiting industry experts. Recently, one student had the opportunity to work on his single with Bring Me The Horizon’s Producer, Al Groves – a huge opportunity for the budding songwriter. Read the story here.

Industry Week

We also hold an annual Industry Week, where guest speakers and mentors from the music industry are invited in to talk to students. Our students have the opportunity to learn from people working in the industry right now, and can make invaluable contacts during this week.

Past Industry Week guests have included:

  • Becky Hill - Brit award winning musician
  • Michael Eavis - Glastonbury founder
  • Kim Hawes – Tour Manager
  • Tom Visconti - Worked with David Bowie
  • Linda Perry - Lead singer from 4 Non Blondes, worked with Christina Aguilera, Robbie Williams, Pink, and Adele
  • Piers Aggett - Rudimental
  • Sister Bliss - Faithless

Check out our talks OnDemand here

Splendour Festival

Each year, a number of Music Performance students get to perform to thousands in the crowd on the Confetti and Courtyard Stages at Nottingham's Splendour Festival.

BBC Introducing

The platform for up-and-coming artists has regular shows at Confetti's very own venue Metronome.

Splendour-Music-Festival-Nottingham-Confetti stage
Confetti students perform on stage at Splendour Festival
BBC-Introducing-Metronome-Confetti-student band
Student band, Crying Violets performing at BBC Introducing at Metronome
JamesBurt-Metronome-Confetti-Student-Music-Single
Music Performance student, James Burt releases single at Metronome

Continue your studies

Each case will be considered individually, but upon successful completion you’re automatically entitled to enter into the final year of our BA (Hons) Music Performance to gain a full BA qualification.

Your career

You can also move straight into your career, in areas which might include:

  • Singer/songwriter
  • Band member
  • Session musician
  • Record producer
  • Composer for the film and TV industry
  • Music teacher
  • Music journalist

91% of students agree that the course has enhanced their career prospects (National Student Survey 2023)

Open Days

Saturday 13 July - London
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Saturday 6 July - Nottingham
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