Memorial University of Newfoundland School of Music
The School of Music's twenty full-time faculty are a diverse group of performers and scholars from across North America who are as dedicated to the highest standard of teaching, as they are to their own professional careers. With 30 years of offering undergraduate concentrations in performance, music education, composition and music history, the School introduced Atlantic Canada's only graduate programs in music in September 2002. Strong in its professional orientation, Memorial's M.Mus. degree will permit specializations in performance, pedagogy and conducting.
While the School's programs are oriented toward the preparation of classical musicians and music teachers, the rich tradition of the music of Newfoundland and Labrador is a legacy which is also honoured in its curriculum. Courses in folksinging, fiddling and accordion are taught by tradition-bearers from the professional music community. And thanks to the Canada Research Chair Program, the School has established a new Centre for the Study of Music, Media and Place in 2002 to provide a meeting ground for researchers, traditional musicians and new media. With a interim, physical home in the St. John's Arts and Culture Centre and an active schedule of events, MMaP is building the bridge between the research and teaching resources of the university and the vitality of Newfoundland and Labrador's traditional music communities. New M.A. and Ph.D. programs in ethnomusicology welcomed their first students in September 2005.
The School of Music at Memorial University is now 30 years old. It was founded from the charismatic initiatives of Nish Rumboldt and the indomitable Don Cook, both responding to the need for professional training in the province that has the highest per capita population of musicians in Canada.
Since 1975, the School has
•graduated more than 500 musicians with B. Mus., B. Mus.Ed. and M.Mus degrees.
•grown from a first class of 8 to over 185 full-time students in the program to become the largest School of music in Atlantic Canada.
•acquired a national reputation for its superior professional program. A recent external review of the School of Music determined that the School meets or exceeds a national standard for university music on every measure.
•recruited a full-time faculty of 20 renowned performing musicians and scholars who not only teach at the School of Music, but perform as principals with the NSO; adjudicate across Canada; take the name of Newfoundland and Labrador on to international stages in New York, Boston, Toronto, Spain, Germany, Ireland and China; and offer clinics and master classes everywhere in the province.
•constructed in 1986 a first-class facility, the M. O. Morgan Building, which is home not only to the School, but to much of the musical activity of the region in providing rehearsal and performance space to the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra, Festival 500, Sound Symposium, the Newfoundland Symphony Youth Choir, the Kiwanis Festival, Rotary Musicfest, the Tuckamore Chamber Music Festival and numerous other activities.
•initiated the most active concert series in the province, Music at Memorial with more than 25 chamber and ensemble concerts by faculty and visiting artists each season in Cook Recital Hall.
•sent its graduates not only into many of the 179 music specialist positions in Schools across the province; but as highly sought-after school music teachers across Canada; in private studios from St. Johnís to Victoria where the invisible, but critical education of young musicians happens; and increasingly in chairs in symphony orchestras in Canada and abroad; in opera companies in major centres from Toronto to Liepzig; in university posts in Canada and the States and on concert stages of the world.
•inaugurated the first graduate programs in music in Atlantic Canada beginning with the introduction of M.Mus. programs in performance, performance/pedagogy and conducting in the Fall of 2002 and more recently with the addition of M.A. and Ph.D. programs in ethnomusicology. Currently twenty students are pursuing graduate degrees in music at MUN.
In the coming years
In the next five years, the School expects to
•Complete its cycle of facilities renewal. Following on the March 2005 inauguration of Petro-Canada Hall, our new 124-seat rehearsal and performance space fully equipped for web-casting and multi-site performance and pedagogy; the School will complete its $500K renovation and update of our premier concert venue, D. F. Cook Recital Hall in June 2006. Phase three renewal plans already in draft form include the construction of a ìsmartî conference centre with dedicated music capacity, studios for percussion and opera, and a doubling of our capacity of research and rehearsal facilities.
•recruit and appoint a new Canada Research Chair in Music Technology in collaboration with the Faculty of Engineering and initiate a leading edge research agenda in music technology.
•expand its newly introduced graduate programs in performance, conducting and ethnomusicology.
•develop its MMAP Centre into the major documentation and consultation centre in the country for traditional music, as well as a meeting place and recording facility for traditional musicians.
•collaborate with the provincial government through its innovative ìCultural Connectionsî initiative to bring touring performances and workshops, as well as professional development for music teachers annually into every school in the province.
•collaborate further with the professional musicians and musical institutions across the province.