A disciplined course of study in music performance, composition, and theory can be difficult but is also very rewarding.
Students that pursue higher education in the study of music develop their communication, critical thinking, teamwork, and creativity skills as well as learn various approaches to do so.
There are many different types of music schools in Canada. The nation is not short on musical talent, worldwide knowledge, or music degrees that suit all kinds of interests, from colleges to conservatories. The variety of academic programs offered and the size of the classes distinguish universities from conservatories.
Universities provide a wider variety of extracurricular activities and opportunities for student life outside of the classroom, but conservatories are better suited for those who want to devote more time to developing a particular interest or skill.
The best 10 music schools in Canada are listed below. While some may contend that music degrees are constrained, many have gone on to achieve international renown as composers, manufacturers of musical instruments, teachers, and even lawyers in the music business.
Anyone who appreciates dissecting and learning about the art of music may consider earning a degree in music.
The 10 Best Music Schools in Canada
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Humber College Faculty of Media and Creative Arts (Toronto, ON)
Students pursuing a degree in music can take advantage of numerous resources, international opportunities, and practical work experience through the Faculty of Media and Creative Arts at Humber College. Two bachelor’s degree programs are available through the institution, one in music and the other in contemporary music, as of 2005.
The College is trying to make the Humber Cultural Hub out of its Lakeshow Campus. By fostering a new economy for underserved local areas, The Hub seeks to support and nurture the next generation of artists.
Alysha Brillinger, a gifted Canadian jazz musician, and Greg Wells, a multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and audio engineer, are two notable alumni.
Wells is a well-known author with a long list of accomplishments, including The Greatest Showman: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. He has also collaborated with musical greats like Celine Dion and Elton John.
Acadia University School of Music (Wolfville, NS)
With an average class size of 28 students and three bachelor’s degree options in music and music therapy, Acadia’s School of Music is renowned for its avant-garde and varied offerings.
Students must play 2-3 pieces of music in any style(s) at auditions, which also involve a faculty interview. The performances can be pre-recorded, live online, or in-person.
Seven additional ensembles, ranging from a jazz/big band to a gamelan ensemble, are also housed within the university. The original Gamelan Ensemble, which was founded in 2009, introduced West Java-based traditional and modern music from Indonesia.
The School of Music is based in a tiny town in Nova Scotia, and its program is organized on three themes: music performance and proficiency training, music teacher preparation, and menthol health and personal development.
Victoria Conservatory of Music (Victoria, BC)
The 1964-founded Victoria Conservatory of Music (VCM) is a not-for-profit institution and one of Canada’s top music schools. The music program today has approximately 4,500 students of all musical ages and skills, up from its original eight-student class.
Classical, contemporary, tech and creative, therapeutic, postsecondary, and early childhood education are among the several offerings.
With professional coaches and mentors that have worked with famous organizations and corporations, like The Victoria Jazz Orchestra and Universal Studios, students have countless opportunity to develop partnerships with industry specialists.
All music-related talents and trades can be learned at the conservatory. Students who enroll in VCM’s School of Music Technology and Creativity discover novel approaches to music production employing state-of-the-art software and applications.
Queen’s School of Music (Kingston, ON)
At Queen’s University, the Dan School of Drama and Music welcomes all forms of training in the performing arts.
In contrast to other schools, the school takes pride in integrating technical production, administration, scholarship, and performance cohesively rather than independently.
The fundamentals of theory, musicology, musicianship, and applied studies are covered in undergraduate programs in music, music theater, and music education. People that enroll in master’s programs will learn more about administration and leadership in the arts.
There are several industry specialists among the university’s professors. Internationally renowned mentors make up the faculty, including Dr. Adrienne Shannon, a pianist who has played as a soloist, chamber musician, and duo pianist and has recorded for broadcast on the BBC, PBS, RAE Italy, and many other media outlets.
University of Western Ontario Don Wright Faculty of Music (London, ON)
Three departments, including Music Performance Studies, Music Research and Composition, and Music Education, are housed at the Don Wright Faculty of Music at the University of Western Ontario.
6,000 alumni from the institution have gone on to pursue diverse careers in law, theater, and television. By using the university’s network, alumni have unlimited opportunity to take part in numerous outreach initiatives, advanced music symposiums, music competitions, and festivals.
Three of the five winners of the Met Opera Laffont Competition were current or former students of the school, demonstrating the institution’s willingness to attain national recognition. There will be an audition and/or interview process for students interested in applying for the Bachelor of Music or the Bachelor of Arts degrees in Music, Popular Music Studies, or Music Administrative Studies.
University of British Columbia School of Music (Vancouver, BC)
The School of Music at the University of British Columbia provides undergraduate, graduate, and non-degree training in music composition, performance, teaching, and scholarship.
Undergraduates have the choice of pursuing a five-year dual music and education degree program or a bachelor’s in music.
Alumni from UBC have paved excellent career pathways in fields ranging from music to education through the numerous degree programs.
Among the distinguished alumni are Cris Derksen, a prize-winning cellist and Indigenous activist, and Roydon Tse, the winner of the 2020 iSing! Young Artist’s International Composition Competition.
The University has increased the chances for students to work together with classmates and neighborhood organizations. These initiatives include student ensembles in a symphony, laptop orchestras, teaching assistantships, volunteer opportunities with the Vancouver Opera, and more.
University of Toronto Faculty of Music (Toronto, ON)
A network of around 7,500 alumni from the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music have appeared on stages all over the world.
The school, one of seven major professional faculties, offers its music students a variety of concentrations and learning opportunities.
One-year advanced certificates in performance, four-year bachelor’s degrees in music, and graduate-level music performance and composition programs are all available as degrees. The Edward Johnson Building, located south of the Royal Ontario Museum, is where classes are held.
Toronto is a thriving cultural center with engaging lectures, concerts, and seminars where students can connect with professional instrumentalists and singers.
The musical landscape is ideal for anyone seeking an immersive experience, with access to a variety of facilities like the University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio and the 815-seat MacMillian Theatre.
Royal Conservatory of Music Glenn Gould School (Toronto, ON)
In order to provide talented young artists with post-secondary and post-graduate professional training in music performance, the Royal Conservatory of Music Glenn Gould School was founded in 1997.
The conservatory, which has been around for more than 130 years and is one of the most prestigious and well-known organizations in music education, has taught award-winning musicians like pianist Francine Kay and opera singer Peter Barrett.
Three levels of education in music, performance, and a postgraduate artist diploma program are available at the institution. Selected applicants to the Rebanks Family Fellowship and International Performance Residency Program get career counseling and pursue private study with outstanding instructors and visiting artists.
Students from the conservatory have about 100 performances each year in important Toronto entertainment venues like Koerner Hall and Trinity-St. Paul’s United Church.
Quebec Conservatory of Music and Dramatic Art (Quebec)
Nine music and theater institutions make up the esteemed educational network known as the Quebec Conservatory of Music and Dramatic Art.
The network, which has seven institutions devoted to music and two to the dramatic arts, was founded in 1942 with the intention of offering the community higher education in the arts.
Three music training programs in composition, conducting, and interpretation are provided by the organization. By providing this instruction to adults with doctorate degrees and students in grade levels, the conservatory encourages artistic independence.
Two to three years of study are required for undergraduate and graduate degrees that concentrate on orchestral conducting, performance, or instrument mastery. The conservatories are situated in the fashionable French-speaking city, which is home to a diverse population of musicians, artists, and creatives.
McGill University Schulich School of Music (Montreal, QC)
Over 800 students who are pursuing music degrees at the undergraduate, master’s, doctoral, or graduate levels call the McGill University Schulich School of Music home. The Department of Music Research and the Department of Performance both include 16 study areas.
Since its establishment in 1904, the McGill Conservatorium of Music has gained international renown for its opera, orchestra, jazz, and early and contemporary music programs.
Graduates of the curriculum, which combines research, technology, and community service, have even been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and have received multiple Juno Awards.
Over 700 performances are produced annually by the professors and students of the school. Since it offers students the perfect environment for pre-professional practice, this training is essential to the program’s success.