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Coronavirus / Covid-19 Update

In view of the continuing uncertainty about the spread of Covid-19 and in the light of the government's most recent advice, the Royal College of Organists (RCO) has today (Tuesday 17th March) released an update about the impact on RCO events, examinations and National Organ Day. Click here to read Update: RCO and Covid-19.

Event details can be found below. Please book online whenever you see the Book Online link. If you have any enquiries relating to a booking, please email or call 020 3865 6998.

Note that the 24-hour clock is used on all event listings. For classes, the following key is used as a guide to level and suitability : Beginner (Grades 1-4); Intermediate (Grades 4-6); Advanced (Grades 6-8 / CRCO); Diploma 1 (CRCO–ARCO); Diploma 2 (ARCO–FRCO); All Standards. For more information on the different types of events organised by the College, click here.


The IAO-RCO Organ Playing Competition 2020

Saturday 25th July 2020 – Sunday 26th July 2020

Entries are invited to the IAO/RCO Playing Competition for Young Organists, closing date Saturday 29 February at 1300.

A joint IAO and RCO promotion, the competition will be held during the next IAO Music Festival in Edinburgh in July 2020. The semi-finals will be held in St Cuthbert's Church on Saturday 25 July, and the final will take place on Sunday 26 July.

Applicants should be no younger than 18 and no older than 26 on 1 July 2020.



With recitals available to prizewinners courtesy of:


For the IAO-RCO Organ Playing Competition 2020, six competitors will be chosen from recordings to participate in the semi-final round. From there, three competitors will be selected to go through to the final. To enter, applicants must complete the Competition Application Form [click here to download] and return it, with appropriate proof of age, to Andrew Macintosh at

In addition, applicants should submit (on the same day the Competition Application Form is sent) a single unedited sound file (video is not required) lasting 7–10 minutes. The recording must include one of J. S. Bach’s trio movements (a chorale prelude or a movement from a trio sonata) and any other work(s) of choice. The recording should be sent to Andrew Macintosh at using a file transfer service such as

The entry charge is £50, to be paid on the same day the Competition Application Form is sent. Payment should be made by phoning RCO Bookings on 020 3865 6998.

Closing date for applications: Saturday 29 February 2020 at 13:00

Recordings will be passed to the adjudication panel for shortlisting and successful applicants will be contacted no later than Friday 13 March 2020. Applicants selected to go through to the semi-final round will be offered free bed and breakfast accommodation in Edinburgh from 24 to 26 July inclusive. Unsuccessful applicants will have £25 returned to them.



A balanced programme of the applicant’s choosing, lasting around 20 minutes. The programme should consist of at least three contrasting pieces and include a work or movement by Louis Vierne, the 150th anniversary of whose birth falls in 2020. As a guide, the repertoire should be of Diploma level.

The semi-final rounds will be held on Saturday 25 July. Three competitors from the semi-final will go through to the final, which will take place on Sunday 26 July.

The specification of the instrument can be found on NPOR.

Arrangements for practice will be made at a later stage.


A balanced programme of the applicant’s choosing, lasting around 40 minutes. Some repertoire from the semi-final round may be included. The final will be held on Sunday 26 July. Arrangements for practice will be made known at a later stage.


Before completing the Competition Application Form, applicants should note the following Conditions of Entry:

  1. You must be available for the period of the competition (24 to 26 July).You should be no younger than 18 and no older than 26 on 1 July 2020.
  2. You are required to demonstrate that you meet the age requirement by providing a PDF of a passport, ID card, driving licence, or similar when submitting the Competition Application Form.
  3. The statement at the end of the Competition Application Form should be signed by a professional musician.
  4. Your sound file should be sent on the same day your application is made, and the file should be clearly identifiable with your name. Please use a transfer service such as, copying your upload to
  5. The application fee of £50 is payable on the same day the application is made.
  6. If selected, you will be required to provide (by an appointed time) a score for every piece to be performed in the same edition as you intend to use for performance.

Are you ready to apply? Please make sure you fill in all sections of the Competition Application Form, including the signed statement from a professional musician. Your recording should be submitted, and your entry payment made, on the same day. Please remember that the deadline for the receipt of applications is 13:00 on Saturday 29 February.


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