Faculty of Fine & Applied Arts
School of Performing Arts
The Music Diploma (Classical) Program provides a rich learning environment that nurtures the artistic and creative potential of each student.
The program integrates theoretical, historical and performance studies, offering concentrations in piano, voice, guitar, strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion and composition.
This two-year Diploma is transferable to a Bachelor of Music Degree and provides the foundation for further studies in Music Education and the Liberal Arts.
Many Music diploma students have successfully transferred into third year Music Therapy.
- Demonstrate the ability to hear, identify and work conceptually with the melodic, harmonic and rhythmic elements of tonal music, including sight-reading, keyboard proficiency and analysis, and to use these skills to solve musical problems and evaluate the way music is shaped by artistic movements and cultural forces.
- Demonstrate a working knowledge of music history and literature and the development of musical forms and genres from the Western art tradition up to the present time including the aural recognition of styles, forms and genres.
- Demonstrate research skills and an ability in written communication and critical inquiry appropriate to third-year university level of study.
- Competently perform repertory appropriate to third-year university entry level as individuals and as members of ensembles, utilizing skills and knowledge gained from the learning outcomes in theory, musicianship skills, keyboard skills and music history.
- Demonstrate familiarity with music technology in its various forms for composition and scholarly pursuits.
Note: Fees are subject to change. Some programs have fees for supplies and equipment that aren’t included in the estimate. To get an idea of what you’ll pay to study at CapU, try out our Tuition & Fees Estimator.
Total program credits: 62.00
First year students with a low result on the Theory Placement Exam may enroll in PMI 060/061 in order to provide supplemental instruction to MUS 100/112 OR to prepare for entry into MUS 100/112 in their second year. Please note that PMI 060/061 credits cannot be counted toward completion of the Music Diploma and must be taken in addition to the required courses.
Note: Dates are subject to change.
BC Secondary School graduation (Grade 12) or equivalent; or Mature Student status
A minimum grade point average of 2.0 (60%) calculated on English 12 or English 12 First Peoples and two academic Grade 12 courses.
Capilano English Language Requirement for students whose primary language is not English: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL): paper=560, internet=83, or English Language Assessment (ELA)=145, or International English Language Testing System (Academic IELTS)=6.5 overall, and no one score less than 6, or Canadian Academic English Language Assessment (CAEL)=70, or Pearson Test of English (PTE Academic)=56 or Capilano University EAP 100 and 101 with a minimum B+ grade in each course.
Audition, theory test, ear test, interview.
For the official publication of programs, course descriptions and admission requirements please view the Capilano University 2018-2019 Calendar (pdf).
All students planning to enter the Music Diploma program must audition. This process includes a performance of repertoire, an ear test, an interview and a theory exam. Applicants must demonstrate a thorough and fluent knowledge of the fundamentals of music (Rudiments).
Approximately three weeks after their audition, students will receive notification of their acceptance or nonacceptance to the Music Diploma program.
All prospective students wishing to enter the Music Diploma Program are required to audition on their primary instrument. Those students unable to attend a live audition may submit a tape/CD or video recording for assessment. Due to enrolment demands and to be eligible for entrance scholarships, applicants are strongly advised to audition as early as possible.
When filling out the application form please include which instrument(s) you will be auditioning on in the comments section of the form.
Students will be notified of their audition date in early spring.
The audition process consists of the following four parts:
Applicants must perform two contrasting selections, preferably by memory and not to exceed 15 minutes. One copy of each selection must be provided for the audition committee. A list of repertoire studied within the last two years and a letter of reference from the applicant's current teacher should be presented at the audition, if possible. Where an accompanist is needed, it is suggested the applicant provide his or her own pianist or perform without accompaniment (an accompanist provided by the university may be available on certain audition dates).
Sight-Reading may be required at the discretion of the audition committee.
Performance Level Required:
- Piano: Royal Conservatory of Music Grade Ten or equivalent.
- Applicants below this level may enroll in a preparatory year.
- Voice: There is no specific grade level required. An ability to perform in a language other than English is an advantage, but not required.
- Wind/Brass/Strings/Guitar/Percussion: Royal Conservatory of Music Grade Six or equivalent.
The above grade levels are approximate guidelines and those applicants who are below the indicated level and demonstrate good potential for future growth and development will be given consideration.
2. Musicianship Skills Assessment
- Tap or clap a short rhythmic excerpt
- Identify intervals within an octave (ascending and descending)
- Identify chords (major, minor, dominant and diminished sevenths in root position)
- Pitch Matching (match one to three pitches with the voice after being heard on the piano)
Applicants will be asked about their musical background and future music, career and personal goals.
4. Theory Exam
Applicants must demonstrate a thorough and fluent knowledge of the fundamentals of music (pitch, key signatures, scales, rhythm, intervals, chords, transposition and musical terms).
Applicants who have successfully completed the Royal Conservatory of Music Level Eight Theory (Advanced Rudiments/Grade Two Rudiments) Exam will be granted exemption, however, are required to bring a copy of their RCM certificate to the audition.
A sample theory exam is available from the music office or by downloading the following PDF files:
Sample Theory Exam (pdf)
Recommended Texts for Preparation:
- Berlin, Boris, Molly Sclater and Kathryn Sinclair. Keys to Music Rudiments. Toronto: Gordon V. Thompson (Warner Bros. Publications), 1968-1969.
- Lawless, James. The New Theory Workbook. 3 vols. Waterloo, Ontario: Waterloo Music, 1991.
- Sarnecki, Mark. The Complete Elementary Music Rudiments. Mississauga, Ontario: Frederick Harris Music, 2001.
- Vandendool, Grace. Keyboard Theory. 3 vols. Mississauga, Ontario: Frederick Harris Music, 2001.
- Wharram, Barbara. Elementary Rudiments of Music. Mississauga, Ontario: Frederick Harris Music, 1969.
5. Distance Audition Information
- What format should I use to record my audition?
You can use any format that will allow us to clearly hear and see your performance. Typically applicants either send a DVD or use a website such as YouTube to post their performance online. If you send a DVD, please ensure that the file name is a standard one i.e. Mp4, which is usable by most computers or DVD players. Recordings should be in one uninterrupted take for each piece performed. Generally, two pieces in contrasting styles are sufficient.
Submit DVDs to (please note DVDs will not be returned):
2055 Purcell Way,
North Vancouver, BC V7J 3H5
Submit YouTube auditions to email@example.com quoting the exact URL link for your audition.
- How will I write the theory placement test?
Please provide the name and contact information of the music educator who will oversee your writing of the theory placement test. We will email or fax them the test and they will be required to return the test to us for marking. You must write the test with the following guidelines: one-hour time limit, no help from the overseeing teacher, and no outside resources in the room.
- How will my interview and musicianship testing be done?
This part of the audition is typically done by telephone or Skype. If you are able to assure us of your proficiency in musicianship skills, the test can be postponed until after you have received a letter of admittance - the musicianship test is really just a placement test. It does not normally prevent an applicant from being admitted to the program unless they have some kind of hearing disability. The telephone or Skype sessions will be arranged.