Latest exam updates

Exam refunds

To support customers affected by ongoing COVID restrictions, for Practical and Performance Grade exams from 1 January to 31 May 2021 any absent candidate will automatically receive a refund. This includes Performance Grades where the candidate has been unable to record and upload their video. You do not need to contact us to request a refund. However, it will help us if you can log in to your account and cancel the exam.

For Online Music Theory exams and any paper based exams taking place outside of the UK/Ireland we anticipate COVID restrictions will not prevent candidates from sitting their exam so absentee candidates will not automatically receive a refund and our normal Withdrawal, Non-attendance and Fee Refunds Policy still applies.

Music Theory exams – March 2021

  • Online Music Theory exams (Grades 1 to 5) – we are cancelling the online exams planned for 16 March. Exams in May and June will go ahead as planned.
  • Paper Music Theory exams (Grades 6 to 8) – the next exams will take place in June. Please note, dates and booking periods for Grades 1-5 and Grades 6-8 may be different from now on. For full details, see our dates and fees page.
  • Grade 5 Music Theory requirement - from 1 January to 30 April 2021 only, candidates can take Grade 6 to 8 Performance or Practical exams without first passing Grade 5 Music Theory. From 1 May 2021, the Grade 5 Music Theory requirement will return with flexibility about timing. If you receive an email asking for your proof of prerequisite, please ignore this. We will still release any results in line with the arrangements outlined here.

For more information click here.

Performance Grade exams

We will be offering Performance Grade exams every month for the remainder of 2021. Please check here for dates and fees. We are extending the introductory 15% discount for these exams so that it applies to all remotely-assessed Performance Grade and ARSM exams in 2021. Just enter code ABPG15MO when you book using our online service. Please also read our discount information and terms and conditions here.

Creating our virtual ensemble

From watching our social media feeds, it feels like so many musicians are finding ways to connect with each other by performing in virtual ensembles. We, as musicians, have been trained to play with others and it’s an important part of what so many of us like to do.

Creating our own virtual ensemble has been eye-opening for all of us here at ABRSM. We’ve had such an overwhelming response with so many different instruments, so many countries represented and films from all ages and abilities. We’ve also really enjoyed reading your thoughts on the project and how much your children or students have enjoyed learning the piece at home. We’ve met some cute dogs and seen some great Disney outfits! We’ve had stories of students whose exams were cancelled due to Covid19, and we’ve had whole families submit recordings. We never expected such an amazing response!

So, what’s next?

The project has proved that there’s a real appetite for activities like this that you can do at home, that allow you to join up with others outside your local community and that provide an inspiring goal – and deadline – to work towards.

With our new Piano syllabus on the way , we now have a piano project in the pipeline, which we hope all the pianists out there will get involved in.. However, we would also love to hear your suggestions for other virtual ensemble projects . Please send any ideas to [email protected]

In case you missed it yesterday, here’s the ABRSM contribution to Make Music Day.

Here are some of our favourites:

  1. Arianna Art Ensemble - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KQhF3tUsFc
  2. Hear the West End Sing - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kIhBgQAw3U
  3. Foden’s Band - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qXzRuPErFqw
  4. The Big Social Stomp - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUlZvmauEo8&t=113s
  5. A Sondheim 90th Birthday Celebration - https://youtu.be/A92wZIvEUAw?t=209
  6. Into the Unknown – Frozen 2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShIoFhwGWTs
  7. English National Opera Die Fledermaus Overture piano duet – (how did this get this so in time!?) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=noJOk73lmAM
  8. The Hermes Experiment: Double Fiesta by Meredith Monk - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GjES0_S2jU
  9. Nottingham Youth Orchestra Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v1dhzTMtt1w
  10. The thing I like most is the birdsong https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ia18omtgYKI

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