Music at École Vincent-d'Indy

École (de musique) Vincent-d'Indy. A private, co-educational school operated by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. It dates back to 1920, when Sister Marie-Stéphane was the director of a music study program for young girls in all the houses of the Community.

Music at École Vincent-d'Indy

École (de musique) Vincent-d'Indy. A private, co-educational school operated by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary. It dates back to 1920, when Sister Marie-Stéphane was the director of a music study program for young girls in all the houses of the Community. In 1932 a special school was set up, called the École supérieure de musique d'Outremont; it became affiliated the following year to the faculty of arts of the University of Montreal. Its main objectives were 'to promote the art of music, to teach music and singing in regular courses, to give lectures, concerts and recitals, to organize competitions, to set examinations and to grant certificates and diplomas'. To assist in achieving this program, the services of eminent secular musicians were sought from the beginning. Among the teachers were Claude Champagne, Camille Couture, Alfred La Liberté, Léo-Pol Morin, Raoul Paquet, Frédéric Pelletier, Rodolphe Plamondon and later, Louise André, Louis Bailly, Louis Charbonneau, Jean Dansereau, Bernard Diamant, Yvonne Hubert, Jean-Paul Jeannotte, Roland Leduc, Michel Longtin, Paul Loyonnet, Pierre Rolland, and Jean-François Sénart, as well as many nuns, including Lucille Brassard, Reine Décarie, Rhené Jaque, Juliette Milette, Natalie Pépin, and Monique Pomerleau.

Sister Marie-Stéphane, who had become an admirer of Vincent d'Indy after hearing him lecture in Montreal in 1921, commemorated the centenary of his birth in 1951 by naming the school after him. During the 1950s enrolment in the school increased, and in 1960 it moved to a building specially designed for music on Bellingham Ave (re-named Vincent-d'Indy Ave in 1972). The school became co-educational at this time. The adjoining auditorium was inaugurated 22 Nov 1964 and named Salle Claude-Champagne in honour of the composer and teacher who had worked at the school for close to 35 years. In August 1967 Sister Marie-Stéphane retired; she was succeeded by Sister Stella Plante 1967-78, Sister Lorraine Boulanger 1978-82, and Sister Madeleine Tanguay 1982-8, followed by Sister Marie-Paule Provost in 1988. In 1980 the University of Montreal purchased the school building and Salle Claude-Champagne. In 1981 the school was relocated in one of the community's convents on Côte-Ste-Catherine Road in Outremont.

The school's diplomas continued to be granted by the University of Montreal until 1970, but formal affiliation had already ended in 1967 when the university received a new charter. The school thus had to reconsider its status, and in 1970 it became affiliated to the University of Sherbrooke. This agreement was terminated in 1978, and the school assumed the status of a private Cegep. Students who had enrolled in the university program before 1978, however, were allowed to continue their courses at the school and to receive their degrees from the University of Sherbrooke. In addition to the Diplôme d'études collégiales (DEC) offered since 1969, the school also offers extra-curricular courses in elementary and secondary levels. In 1989-90, there were about 525 students and 70 full-time and part-time teachers at the school.

The university-level program included a B MUS in performance 1933-80 and in musicology 1970-80; an M MUS in performance 1933-80; a licence (L MUS) granted by the school 1931-3, and then by the University of Montreal until 1959; and a diploma for concert performance in preparation for major national or international competitions, granted by the school 1963-70, and then by the University of Sherbrooke until 1979. In addition, a diploma for composition was granted by the University of Montreal 1933-70 and an artist's diploma was granted by the school ca 1953-63, as well as the BES (conferred by the Quebec Ministry of Education, 1964-73) and the CAPEM (1973-80). Among the musicians who have graduated from the school are the singers Louise Lebrun, Gloria Richard, and Sylvia Saurette; the pianists Henri Brassard, Janina Fialkowska, Anna-Marie Globenski, Monik Grenier, Marc-André Hamelin, Jeanne Landry, André Laplante, Stéphane Lemelin and William Tritt; and the composers Jocelyne Binet and Micheline Coulombe Saint-Marcoux.

In 1926 the school's publishing program began, under the name Institut des Saints Noms de Jésus et de Marie, with Sister Marie-Stéphane's Traité d'harmonie. Starting in 1951 it published under the name Éditions de l'École Vincent-d'Indy. Its publications were chiefly didactic works and compositions by the nuns of the school. In 1985 the Vincent d'Indy Foundation was established to create senior grants for students and research grants for teachers. The records of the music department are deposited in the main archives of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary.


Further Reading

  • Prévost, Roland. 'Une grande institution canadienne, l'École supérieure de musique d'Outremont,' P-T, 913, Oct 1947

    Sorel, Anne. 'Une grande école: Vincent-d'Indy,' VM, vol 1, 1965

    Hélène-Andrée, Sister M. [Marie-Paule Morel]. 'Une oeuvre d'éducation artistique: l'École Vincent-d'Indy,' B PED thesis, Institut de pédagogie familiale 1966

    'Soeur Stella Plante a conduit Janina Fialkowska jusqu'à Rubinstein,' Musique périodique, vol 1, Dec 1976

    Gingras, Claude. 'Un nouveau départ pour l'école Vincent-d'Indy,' Montreal La Presse, 13 Jan 1981

    Beaudin, Jean-Philippe. 'L'École Vincent-d'Indy ou l'art d'enseigner la musique,' Montreal La Presse, 19 Nov 1983