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Institute of Continuing Education (ICE)


Studying music at ICE offers a wealth of choice. Courses may focus on particular musical genres, the works of individual composers or specific periods in music history.

Most of these courses are suitable for complete beginners: an ability to read music is not required but tutors are happy to provide advice on using scores. Many of our tutors are eminent instrumentalists and illustrate their courses with musical examples.

The course programme also offers scope for those wishing to develop practical skills in performance and composition.

View our full range of Music courses

Concerts at Madingley Hall

Since its inception in March 2011, the series of Sunday afternoon concerts have offered an opportunity to hear performances by some of the finest musicians from the University of Cambridge (and sometimes further afield) in the intimate and beautiful surroundings of the Madingley Hall Saloon. This has also provided a platform for composers, with at least one premiere in each programme so far. Informal concerts by tutors and, on occasion, participants are also frequently incorporated into weekend music courses.

Find out more and come along to one of our free Madingley Concerts.

Music Tutors

Tim Watts

Tim Watts is ICE’s panel tutor for music. As well as lecturing for the University's Faculty of Music, he is Teaching Associate in Music at St John’s College and a professor of Stylistic Studies at the Royal College of Music. He is also a composer and pianist, with a particular love of writing for voice and working with singers. The courses he teaches reflect this interest in the relationship between music and words, as well as focusing on practical and creative skills and the repertoire of the 20th and 21st centuries.

About our tutors

Music courses at ICE are taught by tutors whose work spans a wide range of areas. Our current tutors’ interests include (to take a few examples) Romantic opera, jazz and improvisation, the craft of composing, and music in British film. A number have worked in association with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Glyndebourne Opera House and the Royal College of Music.

What our students say

If you're thinking of applying but aren't sure what to expect, why not read what some of our recent students have to say about their experience of studying here?

Read what our students say

Find out more

For more information about any of these courses, please contact