Young students in RIAM (High Achievers)

Celebrating Success

Due to COVID-19 the High Achiever Awards and Scholarship & Prizes Competition for 2021 & 2022 have been regrettably cancelled.

(High Achievers / Scholarships / Composition Competition) 

For over one hundred years the Royal Irish Academy of Music has examined and inspired countless numbers of musicians through its RIAM Exams. Each year, performers and composers are identified who deserve a special commendation. We call these our ‘High Achievers’. 

High Achieving Performers 

In 2000, the High Achiever Awards were established to recognise outstanding students who took RIAM Exams. Each year over 40,000 students of music and drama are eligible to compete for these special awards. The top 300 candidates across all exams receive High Achiever commendations.

From this group, a selection are chosen to perform in regional concerts. To date over 5,000 students have received a High Achiever Award.

Previous High Achievers include actor Andrew Scott, Evanna Lynch, Westlife’s Cian Egan and violinist Zoe Conway. 

High Achieving Scholars 

The RIAM offers an annual competition for Entrance Scholarships to school-age students – providing free tuition at the Academy in the student’s instrument/voice for one academic year. Application forms are available from the RIAM Exams Office or may be downloaded. 

Eligible students are those who received a mark of 90% or higher in their most recent RIAM Exam.  

The scholarships will be determined by audition, which is held each June. You should prepare two contrasting pieces of your own choice at the same or higher standard as the pieces selected for your last RIAM Exam. You will also be asked the scales & arpeggios, aural requirements and sight-reading for your most recent RIAM Exam. 

High Achieving Composers 

The Local Centre Composition Competition is intended to encourage school-age students interested in composition. The winner will receive a cash prize and have the winning entry published in the Piano Albums.

The standard of the piece composed can be for any grade up to and including Grade V and the piece should be given a descriptive title.