Music at University of Waterloo

University of Waterloo. Non-denominational university founded in 1957 at Waterloo, Ont, and incorporated in 1959. It came to be noted in particular for its schools of optometry and engineering.

Music at University of Waterloo

University of Waterloo. Non-denominational university founded in 1957 at Waterloo, Ont, and incorporated in 1959. It came to be noted in particular for its schools of optometry and engineering.

Musical activities were introduced at first on an extracurricular basis by Paul Berg (b Hartford, Wisc, 11 Oct 1907, d Kitchener, Ont, 14 Nov 1975) who, as director of cultural affairs for the university, established and coached choral and instrumental groups and organized art shows, theatrical performances, concerts by visiting performers, and several arts festivals. In 1965 he hired Alfred Kunz to direct the choirs and ensembles, and these presented annual concerts.

Conrad Grebel College, a church-supported Mennonite residential and academic affiliated college established on the campus, began offering undergraduate courses in music history and theory in 1963, and the university's credit courses in music have been given there. Through cross-registration University of Waterloo students have been able, also, to avail themselves of courses offered by the Faculty of Music at Wilfrid Laurier University. The new Conrad Grebel College building, opened in 1976, has provided music studios, practice rooms, and a library.

A general BA in music was offered by the Faculty of Arts for the first time in 1974, and an honours BA in music, in 1979. When a Music Dept was established within the faculty in 1977, Wilbur Maust was appointed chairman. In 1990 the teaching staff comprised 6 full-time (Maust, Helen Martens, who had been on staff at Conrad Grebel College since 1965, Leonard Enns, Kenneth Hull, Carol Ann Weaver, and David Huron) and 27 part-time teachers. Courses offered in 1990 include music history/literature, theory, performance, popular music, jazz, psychology of music, women in music, computer and electroacoustic music, aesthetics of music, composition, and conducting. Waterloo launched an honours BA program in arts administration in 1984. An honorary LLD was awarded to Raffi Armenian in 1980.

Along with the facilities provided by the Conrad Grebel College, the university contains the Humanities Theatre (performance home of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Orchestra until September 1980 and the venue for the university's concert series) and the Theatre of the Arts (in the Modern Languages Building). Performing ensembles in 1990 included the 35-voice Conrad Grebel College Choir under Enns; 40-piece Orchestra under William H. Janzen Jr; Menno Singers (a community choir sponsored by the university) also directed by Janzen; 20-voice Chamber Choir under Maust; Concert Band conducted by Karen Tomlin; Stage Band conducted by Michael Wood; and Inter-Mennonite Children's Choir under Jane Schultz. A University Choir was begun in 1980. The personnel for these extra-curricular groups has been drawn from both campus and community.

See also College songs.


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