MMus (Conducting – Choral, Instrumental, or combined)
The Master of Music programs in performance, performance/pedagogy and conducting directly address the variety of career and life skills which the contemporary musician must possess. The process of optimally developing the performing musician is complemented with a range of other learning and experiential opportunities that address the teacher, small-business-person, and community-cultural-advocate roles that make up the profession today. These programs are also conceived in recognition of the fact that no two musicians will require exactly the same complement of professional skills. Thus the program permits a high degree of flexibility in the details of content within a common structure.
Each specialization in the program contains the following components:
Across the range of performance and conducting options, the objective of this element of the program is the same: the acquisition of professional-level skill. There is considerable flexibility in defining the performance medium.
Conducting majors have the option of working principally with instrumental ensembles, principally with vocal ensembles, or a balanced combination of both. Our conducting majors get regular podium time with the School’s choirs and instrumental ensembles, as well as access to the unique resources of the musical community in St. John’s, affording a wide range of conducting opportunities.
Performance and performance/pedagogy concentrations are available in most orchestral instruments, guitar, keyboard and voice, with the option of a secondary performance specialization where appropriate and feasible. Students are mentored in the preparation of two public concerts of professional calibre; they also have the option of preparing a professional audio recording. In addition, a variety of chamber music experiences are available for credit.
The Suncor Energy String Fellowship program, offers a unique career development opportunity for string players. This two-year program provides four string players with a Suncor Energy String Fellowship worth $12,000 per year. Students perform with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra and mentor young string students through chamber music performances and teaching, gaining valuable professional experience while completing their MMus degree.
Music research and critical thinking skills
Research and critical thinking skills are the foundation of any graduate program, including Master of Music programs. This two-semester sequence contains one semester of research methods followed by a seminar course exploring music in its social context. The seminar gives all students the opportunity to examine “big ideas”. International lectures and events are sponsored through the School’s three research centres: Music Media and Place, Bruneau Centre for Excellence in Choral Music, and the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation.
Career skills and complementary professional skills
This component of the program addresses the role of the versatile professional in today’s world. The required course in career skills introduces students to a wide range of careers, deals with practical issues such as taxes and media, and helps students develop the skills needed for career development and promotion. Elective internship placements in the music industry offer hands-on applications of theory, and students can propose and carry out community music-making projects for credit. Additional complementary courses include pedagogy, ensemble repertoire and score study and analysis.
All majors include 3 to 6 credit hours of electives, allowing students to focus on areas of particular interest. In some cases, courses from related disciplines may be included.