Welcome to Chetham’s

Joint Principals, Tom Redmond and Nicola Smith

Joint Principals, Tom Redmond and Nicola Smith

Welcome to Chetham’s School of Music!

We are the largest specialist music school in the UK, and the only one in the north of England. Originally established as a charity school in 1653, we became a co-educational, specialist music school in 1969 and we’re now a central part of music education in the UK.

Our students learn and play in a state-of-the-art New School building, opened in 2012 to provide acoustically designed practice rooms, performance spaces and rehearsal rooms. A full programme of performances takes place in School and across the region, with senior ensembles travelling regularly to London and overseas.

A professional concert hall, The Stoller Hall, brings international artists to perform at Chetham’s and provides a performance space to match the superb standards of playing by our School’s young musicians.

And yet Chetham’s is so much more than a music school. As well as educating the choristers of Manchester Cathedral, it’s a centre of academic excellence. Our alumni includes teachers, neuroscientists, politicians, journalists and more. Students’ wider creativity is celebrated through strong art and drama programmes, and superb facilities for ICT, music technology and science, and high quality teaching in small classes across all subjects, all contribute to their academic success.

It’s also a place to find your people. Our city centre site is home and school to over two thirds of students, aged 8-18. Boarders enjoy access to sports and play facilities onsite, and to trips and activities set up by house staff who are solely dedicated to our students’ wellbeing and their welfare. The city of Manchester itself – with its vibrant shopping, music and culture – provides students with freedom to socialise and explore independently as they develop as responsible young adults.

This unparalleled offering attracts students from across the world, making it a truly international community which celebrates every student’s individuality, passions and potential. Those who join the Chetham’s community – whether as students, staff, parents or audiences – comment on the special atmosphere in the school – an atmosphere which allows every individual to learn, develop and share their skills.

The invitation to share in this community is not limited to potential students. A vibrant programme of public concerts, in School, across the region and further afield, means that audiences can experience the musical skill and youthful energy of Chetham’s students in performance – whether in a solo recital, chamber concert or our symphony orchestra. Visitors with a historical interest are warmly welcome at Chetham’s Library, the oldest public library in the English speaking world; and a full professional concert programme in The Stoller Hall will attract lovers of classical and contemporary music, comedy and spoken word.

Chetham’s really is, truly, an oasis in the heart of Manchester; a space where old meets new, classical meets youth culture, and people meet each other. We look forward to welcoming you very soon.

Joint Principals Nicola Smith and Tom Redmond