The Guildhall School of Music and Drama is an independent music and dramatic arts school which was founded in 1880 in London, England. Students can pursue courses in Music, Opera, Drama and Technical Theatre Arts. The School currently numbers almost 900 students, approximately 700 of whom are undergraduate and postgraduate music students and 175 on the Acting and Technical Theatre programmes. In any given year, about 40% of the students are from outside the UK, typically representing over 50 nationalities.
The school is a member of Conservatoires UK, and of the European Association of Conservatoires. In 2005 the school was awarded the Queens Anniversary Prize for its unrivalled development and outreach programme, Guildhall Connect, and in 2007 it won a further Queens Anniversary Prize in recognition of the work of the Opera Programme over the last two decades. The School was rated No. 1 specialist institution in the UK in the Guardian University Guide 2013 and 2014.
The most significant investment in the Guildhall School’s future came to fruition via the £90 million redevelopment of the neighbouring Milton Court site. The new building, which opened in autumn 2013, houses three new performance spaces: a concert hall (608 seats), a theatre (223 seats) and a studio theatre (up to 128 seats) in addition to drama teaching and administration spaces.
The schools performance facilities include a 308-seat drama and opera theatre, concert hall, lecture/recital hall and a small studio theatre. In addition, students of the school regularly perform in the Soho Theatre, the Royal Court and the Swan (Stratford).