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RWCMD Announces £5 Million ‘Promise’ to become ‘a future-focused, industry-led, inclusive Conservatoire’

The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama today announced its new Promise strategy. As the National Conservatoire of Wales it promises to extend its reach and impact, and further transform its offer to students, celebrating its 75th birthday in 2024 as a world-leading creative skills hub.

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Published on 28/09/2021

The £5 Million ‘Promise’

Promise will be backed by a sustainable investment plan which the College has already put in place and by a £5 million fund-raising campaign to support specific goals. The ambition of the strategy has already inspired The Mosawi Foundation to donate the first lead gift of £1m, the largest single philanthropic gift received in the College’s history.

'The potential of future generations is central to government strategy in Wales and the arts have a recognised part to play, contributing to the economic growth and recovery of cities from the pandemic, as well as being a vital positive force for well-being and creativity, impacting powerfully on individual lives and communities.

Working with a constant flow of young artists from all over the world, the Royal Welsh College is uniquely positioned to contribute significantly to Wales’ global reputation as a creative nation, while making sure that the benefits it offers also reach widely and deeply across the whole country.

Over the next five years, while excellence and performance will always remain at the heart of everything we do, we will become a different kind of conservatoire, one that is more relevant, diverse, accessible, connected and engaged. Through broader and deeper opportunities to engage in the arts, we promise to be part of the nation’s recovery from Covid-19 and to focus on long term means of improving well-being and social inclusion, and delivering economic impact for Wales.'
Professor Helena GauntRWCMD Principal

As well as highlighting the promise and potential inherent in young people, the campaign name reflects the College’s commitment to nurturing artistic talent, encouraging diversity and providing training opportunities to those who are exceptionally gifted, whatever their economic or social background.

In the next five years the College promises to:

• Double the number of scholarships it offers, establish a new Bursary Fund and increase social mobility into the arts through a new ‘pathways’ initiative
• Extend the number of people engaging with the College through its digital performance programme, wider student-led touring in Wales, and develop artistic collaborations and new partnerships across Wales and internationally
• Provide more opportunities for young people across Wales to experience the arts by re-focusing its specialist training for young people under 18, supporting the new expressive arts curriculum in the nation’s schools and training its students to be teachers and mentors
• Explore the potential for an established residency in Cardiff’s city centre, animating unused space, accommodating new courses and offering public performance and participation, particularly for school age children.

'As a family and a foundation we have been getting closer to the College over the last seven years and have been inspired by the resilience, creative vision and determination of its leadership at this time and, always, by the talented young people that flow in and through its doors.

Our gift is a response to exciting and ambitious plans that we feel are deserving of attention and significant support and we have given early to encourage others and in the hope that ours will not be the last seven figure sum that the Promise initiative will secure.

We also hope the fundraising will be enriched by the involvement of many, many people, wherever they are in the world, who will want to add in their promises too, so we are holding back some of our gift as a matched fund to encourage all-important, smaller donations.'
Ali MosawiThe Mosawi Foundation
'Promise is about emerging out of the pandemic on the front foot, even stronger and more ambitious than before. It is beyond wonderful to have secured this first gift from the Mosawi family, who have already been so supportive to us and our students, and I cannot thank them enough for the faith they are showing in us.

However, there is a long way to go to truly unlock the College’s potential and fulfil all our pledges. As Ali says, we hope this campaign will inspire the public to make their own ‘promise’ to support our national conservatoire and that they will now consider joining our membership schemes, legacy giving or through naming a seat in one of our performance spaces.

We also want to talk to business in Wales about the ways that they can get involved, including sponsoring public productions and through providing bursaries for students from poorer socio-economic backgrounds.'
Professor Helena GauntRWCMD Principal

Editors notes

The Mosawi Foundation was formed in 2014 by Ali and May Mosawi, a former student of RWCMD. Ali is the chairman and major shareholder of Al Hayat Scientific office in Baghdad for the distribution of pharmaceuticals of international companies such as AstraZeneca and Pfizer. The Foundation’s objective is to be a catalyst to encourage others to join and make a real difference and supports charities under the categories of youth and communities, nurturing talent, healthcare and trauma relief and outreach to the marginalised.

The Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama, the National Conservatoire of Wales, and part of the University of South Wales Group, operates within its international peer group of conservatoires and specialist arts colleges. It trains young artists drawn from around 50 countries to provide a constant flow of emerging talent into the music and theatre industries and related professions. In 2020 the College became the first ‘Steinway-Exclusive Conservatoire’ in the world, building on its All-Steinway status and taking delivery of a further 24 Steinways to create a first class Steinway fleet of pianos.

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