Best Canadian/North American Schools for Electronic Composition
March 2, 2010 5:07 PM   Subscribe

What are some of the leading computer music (electronic composition) schools in Canada? What about North America?

I know many electronic music programs are popular in the U.K., but I was wondering what the top schools in Canada are? What about in all of North America?
posted by ageispolis to Education (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Concordia University (Montreal) has an Electroacoustic Studies department.
posted by Cuke at 6:30 PM on March 2, 2010

Since I'm talking about Montreal I should also have noted that while McGill (the Schulich School of Music) has an excellent reputation and does offer electroacoustic classes and has digital composition studios they do not have an exclusively computer based program. See here for more info.
posted by Cuke at 6:37 PM on March 2, 2010

McGill's composition program is probably the finest in Canada. Here is a link to their digital studio.
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:37 PM on March 2, 2010

I work in academic music. Are you (OP) looking for a graduate or undergraduate program?

If the latter, you should not focus only on digital/computer music. Here is what I can tell you for sure: McGill (BA) grads get into the top US (and Canadian) DMA and PhD composition programs at a higher rate than those from other Canadian universities. You won't likely get into such a program if you do not develop conventional compositional skills.
posted by fourcheesemac at 6:40 PM on March 2, 2010

My two recommendations:
Concordia University's Electroacoustic Studies
Montreal's EA community is extremely dynamic (with festivals such as Mutek, EuCuE, the Réseaux events, etc.) professors are all active, well-known and respected composers, program is innovative, studios are great.
SFU's School of Contemporary Arts
A lot of great composers come out of SFU, they're pushing octophonic works, have great faculty members.
(I took a few EA classes at Concordia, and am currently doing a PhD in another program. I still know some of the faculty and interact with undergraduate students in EA as well. I also went to SFU and met regularly with 4-5 MA students in EA there).
Both have great facilities. SFU probably has better funding but Vancouver's way more expensive than Montreal (probably more now than ever!).

Université de Montréal also has a really good EA program, but I believe it is all taught in French. If it is not a problem, then you can meet respected composers such as Jean Piché, and Robert Normandeau.
posted by ddaavviidd at 6:42 PM on March 2, 2010

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