RCM & CNCM Piano Exams
Various dates in January, April, June or August
Location: St. Albert Evangelical Lutheran Church, St. Albert (near old Grandin Mall)
Entry Deadline: Early November for January, early January for April, early March for June, early June for August.
Fees: $100 & up (depending on the grade)
RCM (Royal Conservatory of Music) exams are open to students who are in Grade 1 or higher. Exams give students a feeling of completion. Also, these exams are great for students who are very goal motivated. Exams are optional and you can take them any year you choose. (You don’t have to do every one. Ex. you could take a gr. 2 exam & then a few years later a gr. 5 exam…). If you like taking an exam for every grade, that is ok too!
For an exam you need to prepare 4-7 pieces of music (depending on your grade) which should be memorized. You will also have to play a few scales & do some sight reading & ear training excercises. You will be doing all of these things during your regular lessons throughout the year. You have all year to perpare for this exam so it is not as much work as you think.
When you get to the exam center only you will be allowed to be in the room with the examiner (who is NOT your teacher). Your parents will have to wait in the designated waiting area.
Everyone who takes an exam will receive a written assessment by the examiner & an overall mark. You will get your assessment & mark a few weeks after the exam.
Any student who takes an exam & receives a mark of 80% or higher is eligible for a SAPTA Scholarship of $25 cash & a $25 gift certificate at Innovations Music in St. Albert. There is a winner for the higest mark above 80% in each grade level. Only students of SAPTA teachers are eligble to enter students for this scholarship. (Yes, your teacher is a SAPTA member!)
Please register early so there is enough time to choose & learn your music on time.
Once you RSVP for an exam your teacher will confirm that you will be ready on time & then you will have to officially register for your exam on the RCM website. If you are uncomfortable using your credit card online, your teacher can register for you & you can just pay your teacher.
To find out more about RCM Exams click this link:
CNCM Northern Lights Star Performance Exams
Various dates in June
Location: St. Albert ot Edmonton (last year was Christian Reformed Church in St. Albert)
Entry Deadline: April 1 for June exams
Fees: $35-$40 (depending on the level)
CNCM (Canadian National Conservatory of Music) exams are optional. They are available for students in first year piano to Grade 6 for any age level including adults. The exams are named after Canadian composers rather than grades so you don’t feel out of place if you are a teenager or adult playing at a beginner level. This type of exam is perfect for students who would like a goal/challenge but may not have the time to prepare all the additional musicianship skills necessary in a RCM exam. For the Star Performance exam you only need to prepare FOUR own choice pieces. That means you can pick whichever 4 pieces you would like to play. Memory is recommended but not required. That’s it – NO scales, sight reading or ear training. However, you do need to prepare a program & write a short introduction for each piece (that you will have to say during your exam).
The unique thing about this exam is that your play your exam like a recital! Part of the exam requirement is to design & print program for all your invited guests of what you will be playing (beginners make a poster instead). You also get to invite WHOEVER you want to WATCH you play your exam! You will have to introduce your pieces by talking a tiny bit about the composer & the piece. After you play each piece your audience claps for you (which makes you feel great).
Ask your teacher for more details or flip through the syllabus: http://www.cncm.ca/resources/Music+For+Everyone+Programs+Syllabus.pdf