Library and Information Services, Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Friday, 31 August 2012

Thursday, 30 August 2012

Scholarly publishing? Visit The Scholarly Kitchen

If you're looking to publish your research work, then you'll be glad of any authoritative help.  Introducing a blog I've recently come across:-

The Scholarly Kitchen

Do take a look!  Tomorrow, we'll share another couple of useful websites for scholarly authors.

Youth music vacancy

"Call for Artists - Birmingham
The Federation of Irish Societies (FIS),in collaboration with Irish in Birmingham, is seeking to recruit an experienced artist(s) or arts organisation to develop and deliver a youth arts project with young people in Birmingham.

Full artists brief here."
Federation of Irish Societies 

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

BBC Radio Young Folk Award 2013

Details on the BBC website, here.  Begins like this ...

'BBC Radio 2 is once again searching for outstanding young musicians and singers and inviting them to enter the 2013 Young Folk Award.
Young Folk Award 2013 The competition is looking for performers aged between 15 and 20 who perform folk, roots or acoustic music from any culture. It is open to soloists, duos and groups.
Applications must be submitted by 7 September 2012.'

Monday, 27 August 2012

National Chamber Music Day 15th September

Enterprise Music Scotland wants you to know about National Chamber Music Day.

It's on Saturday 15th Sept, and there will be street happenings!  Here are the details:-

By the way, 'Whittaker' has a suite of five Hebridean songs set for flute, viola and cello.  He'd be immeasurably happy if someone would offer to play them for him, to celebrate National Chamber Music Day ...

Glasgow Women's Library - 21st birthday

Broaden your mind - find out about other libraries in Glasgow that might have useful content.
Drama students especially may find interesting material in the Glasgow Women's Library, now housed at the Mitchell Library in Berkeley Street.  AND their 21st birthday is coming up, so there are exciting events forthcoming.
More info on their blog, here:-

The Singer Link

Whittaker came across a useful link for singers and conductors, this weekend:

The Singer Link

"Network with singers around the globe.  This is a one-of-a-kind online choral community for singers and choral conductors to connect."
Definitely worth a look. 

Friday, 24 August 2012

Whittaker realises he's a Teenager

Noting The Thesis Whisperer's second birthday celebrations (see previous posting) made 'Whittaker' really think.

The Thesis Whisperer is two years old, and what a couple of years we've witnessed!  A roaring success, and so far not a toddler tantrum in sight.

Whittaker Live, on the other hand, has now entered the terrible teens.  We could be moody, sullen, capricious and defiant.  We could.  (Harry Enfield's 'Kevin becomes a Teenager' is scarily close to reality.)  But the original William Gillies Whittaker, former Principal of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music, would certainly not have approved.  So, we move forward with dignity, and continue to build upon our modest success to date.  Not, admittedly, the rapid worldwide success of our young friend The Thesis Whisperer, but steady progress all the same.

What has been our most successful posting?  Hard to say, but postings about our own events go down well, as do postings about study skills and useful study-related websites.  Our name-change last September brought significantly increased interest in the website, and we've kept the We are Celebrating page on our sidebar to preserve the memory of all those Scotland-wide concerts and other happenings.

Our aim is to bring useful weblinks and information to performing arts students and professionals. So if you've visited Whittaker Live before, or even if this is your first visit, do tell us what you like - and what you'd like to see more of. 


Australian research support website, The Thesis Whisperer, is two years old today.

There are loads of useful postings about all aspects of doing research, writing it up and submitting it.  Do take a look - it's really helpful!

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Publishing your thesis as a book

Continuing yesterday's writing theme - I've just contributed a blogpost to the 'PhD to Published' website.  If you've written a thesis, you're likely to be wondering what to do with it next? 

Publishing your Thesis as a Book: a Question of Planning. Part One

I've also done a blogpost of my own about writing readably.   If you're interested, you'll find it here.

(My Twitter presence: @Karenmca )

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

You write well, right?

For a bit of innocent entertainment (distraction, really), try this!  The Blablameter detects any rubbish lingering in your perfect prose.  Try it for yourself!

Returning to study for a research degree

Are you coming to join us as a research postgrad?

There's a new book in the Whittaker Library that might interest you: -

Stuart Powell, Returning to Study for a Research Degree.  Find it in the library here.  (We can find more like this, if you tell us what you're looking for.)

Trad on the Tyne

A reminder -


Trad on the Tyne:

a weekend festival of music and more

31 August - 2 September 2012, Haddington

  • And here is the link:-  (The Whittaker Library gets told about all sorts of festivals and events - do come back again for an update.)

Monday, 20 August 2012

Question: What makes Scottish music Scottish?

On this day, 1888

English ballad (and Scottish song) enthusiast William Chappell died, 20 August 1888. 

Why should you care?  Well, he published Popular Music of the Olden Time, which contained many English - and some Scottish - folksongs and their tunes, and a lot of commentary.  The two-volume book really set the cat among the pigeons as far as Scots song enthusiasts were concerned, because he announced that some favourite 'Scottish' songs were really - oh, horror! - English.  More ...

Find Popular Music of the Olden Time in Copac - the online union catalogue of all British university libraries, together with the national libraries and Trinity College Dublin.

Answer: library staff help you answer the big questions by sourcing the detail to back up your arguments.


Storify -

Have you experimented with Storify? It's a way of bringing together different websites etc, to - no kidding! - tell a story.  Your unique story.
  • You could use it to bring a collection of resources together for a project.  Drama Librarian Alan Jones has experimented with this: here's his Re-Act: Referencing E-Learning for ACTors. Voice training. 
  • Or try it as a kind of professional activity portfolio, to compliment your CV.  I had a go at using Storify this way myself - here's the result. (I added in a couple of extramural things as well!)

Friday, 17 August 2012

Guide to playing the Irish flute

This link has just been tweeted to Whittaker, and we had to share it with you.  It's on TradConnect, and it's a Guide to Irish Flute.  Enjoy!  (We Celts have to stick together.)

TradConnect is a website 'connecting traditional Irish musicians across the world'.   You might find it interesting, so here's the homepage -

New Whittaker Library stock

See what's new in the library!

Just a quick reminder - from the Whittaker Library catalogue homepage, you can click on a link to find out what has just been added to stock.

Go to the catalogue here,  In the pink block at the bottom, you'll see
New additions to the catalogue.   And there's a hyperlink under the words 'Please click here'.  The list refreshes itself as we add more stock.

You can also do a catalogue search for New Curriculum music, if you're curious to see what has been put on your reading lists!  This is how it looks today.

Diigo to Whittaker Live 08/17/2012 (a.m.)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Diigo to Whittaker Live 08/16/2012 (p.m.)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Musicworks music at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland

Musicworks easy string orchestra music

Here at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, we have an outreach scheme called Musicworks. 

The Whittaker Library recently added a number of sets of easy string orchestra music to stock, primarily for use by the Musicworks team.

You can find them in the catalogue by searching on Musicworks, then limiting your results to Orchestral.  Click here for results.

Contact our Orchestral Librarian for more details.

Forthcoming events at the Royal Musical Association

The Royal Musical Association

From the RMA's August newsletter, these events may interest our performers and researcher scholars:-


  • RMA Study Day, "Challenging musical ontologies", 23 November 2012, University of Nottingham. Deadline for receipt of proposals for 20-minute papers, 30 August 2012.
  • RMA Research Students' Conference, 3-5 January 2013, University of Southampton. Deadline for receipt of proposals for 20-minute research papers or compositions for saxophone, piano, percussion, and/or electronics, 29 October 2012.


Wednesday, 15 August 2012

ISM Competition for Young Composers

ISM Composers’ Competition 2013

Are you a composer aged 23-35?  Look no further!  Click on the link above.

  • ISM (Incorporated Society of Musicians) homepage

Walter Scott - 241 years old today!

 Happy Birthday, Sir!

It's Walter Scott's birthday today - he was born 15 August 1771 in Edinburgh. 

Yes, this is a performing arts blog.  And Sir Walter Scott was a novelist, true.  But he was also a ballad-collector (and writer), and despite protesting that he wasn't musical, he had a keen interest in Scottish and Borders folk-music.

Why else should musicians care?  Well, here are a few reasons!

From - with thanks
  • He effectively created the image of Scotland that has drawn tourists and visitors ever since. 
  • His novels provided inspiration for any number of operatic and other pieces of classical music.
  • He encouraged impoverished professional musicians like Alexander Campbell (of Albyn's Anthology fame) - and wealthy amateurs like the Maclean-Clephane sisters of Torloisk, on the Isle of Mull, not to mention his own daughter.
  • He published the Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, and one edition had some tunes at the back.
  • He was friendly with James Hogg, another novelist, songwriter and ballad-collector.
  • I searched our library catalogue.  The Whittaker Library has plenty concerning Sir Walter Scott and his contribution to our culture.  Check the catalogue here!
There - is that enough to encourage you to raise a glass to Sir Walter Scott today?!

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Diigo to Whittaker Live 08/14/2012 (p.m.)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

The Talent of our Young People

This is an event in Edinburgh on Friday 17th August, as part of the Festival of Politics.  It looks really interesting!

The Talent of our Young People

Scottish Parliament, Friday 17th August, 17:15 - 18:15

Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy writing Ballet

In the Guardian today -

"Carol Ann Duffy writing dark Rapunzel ballet

Poet laureate revisits sinister original version of classic fairytale for touring production commissioned by Sadler's Wells"  Read it here.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Diigo to Whittaker Live 08/12/2012 (p.m.)

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Have you missed me?

'Whittaker' will be back (and, doubtlessly, blogging) on Tuesday.  Besides catching up on mail and cataloguing, of course. 

(Meanwhile, for any parent about to wave their offspring off to the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, here are some easy recipes for your new undergrads to try out! Don't say we don't take good care of them ...)

A few helpful recipe links would be fun, if anyone feels inspired ... just until the start of session.

Friday, 3 August 2012

Minstrels, metaphors ... and Minstrelsie

Latter-day Minstrelsie

(Shades of Celtic Twilight ...)

A postscript to last year's postings!

Much has been said about images of minstrels and bards in national song collections from the late 18th and early 19th centuries. 'Whittaker' discovered recently that the Whittaker Library also has a quantity of later Minstrelsie song-books, too.

An Edinburgh publisher, T. C. and E. C. Jack, published scores of them at the end of the 19th century and just into the 20th.  (The London firm of Caxton also had a hand in this.)

So - if you're curious, you can see our collection of latter-day minstrelsie books here - Scots, Cambrian, English and British - take your pick!  (Though it has to be said they're art-music collections of popular national songs, and haven't much connection with the earlier ones.)

Worthy of note are the prefatory essays in some (but not all) of the volumes, written by contemporary authorities on such questions as singing the repertoire; the history; and how this generation handled modal melodies.  This paratextual material could prove more interesting than the song-settings themselves. 

Whittaker Live has been busy - but quiet next week

Since 'Whittaker' will be on holiday next week, there will be a lull in library news updates.  But plenty has been posted to inform and intrigue you, so do browse Whittaker's recent offerings:-

  • From Severed heads to Sibelius software;
  • From Scottish cinema to forgotten Scots;
  • From Ballets russes to the RMA;
  • Madness in theatre;
  • Searching the catalogue;
  • Talent-hunting for a trio;
  • NYOS and Benedetti
... and if you think we're missing something vital, then do let us know!

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Madness and Theatre

We've just come across this Wordpress blog, which originated as an Edinburgh MSc thesis on mental health in Scottish theatre:-

The Madness and Theatre Blog

"How Theatre NEMO and Anthony Neilson use drama to challenge perceptions of mental ill health in Scotland 2003-2010.
MSc European Theatre
Graduate School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures
University of Edinburgh August 19th 2011"
The author, Chris Jones, is now studying for a PhD at the University of Kent.

Scotland at the Cinema (National Library of Scotland)

Going to Edinburgh for the Festival or the Fringe?*

Cinema Exhibition

Daily until 28th October 2012

Leave time to go to see Scotland at the Cinema, at the National Library of Scotland.

"Celebrate Scotland's love affair with the movies in our summer exhibition, open daily from 15 June to 28 October."