Music Diploma

  • Fall 2018 early auditions are scheduled for February 15, 16 and 17, 2018. May 2018 auditions are scheduled for May 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30, 2018. Please click "how to apply" for detailed information and support with your application.  All 2018 applicants will be contacted.  Stay tuned!

    The Music Diploma (Classical) Program provides a rich learning environment, which nurtures the artistic and creative potential within each student. The program integrates theoretical, historical and performance studies, offering concentrations in piano, voice, guitar, strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion and composition. Students benefit from frequent recitals and masterclasses on their primary instrument, allowing them to develop confidence and self-expression in performance. Small class sizes with innovative and creative teaching enhance the students' educational experience and prepare them for a wide array of professions in the music field. Participation in the University's award-winning choir allows for concert and touring opportunities, while developing ensemble skills and rehearsal techniques. This two-year Diploma is transferable toward a Bachelor of Music Degree and also provides the foundation for further studies in Music Education and the Liberal Arts.

    For over 30 years, many Music diploma students have successfully transferred into 3rd year Music Therapy. Students may complete the requirements for this program over two years at the same time as they complete the Music diploma by selecting the Music Therapy Course Stream, described on pages 422-426 of the Capilano University Calendar. Special consideration is made for candidates coming to Capilano University who already have many of the prerequisites for the Bachelor of Music Therapy Degree. Students will be advised as to the most efficient path for 3rd year entry into this specific stream of study. 

    All courses in the Music Diploma Program are transferable to the School of Music at the University of British Columbia and to the Faculty of Music at the University of Victoria. Capilano University students have also received transfer credit to the following universities: Alberta, Brandon, Calgary, Dalhousie, Guelph, Lethbridge, McGill, Regina, Simon Fraser, Toronto, Western Ontario, Western Washington and York.

    Graduates of the program who have pursued further studies have successfully developed rewarding careers in the following fields: Elementary, Secondary and Post-Secondary Education, Private Music Instruction, Conducting, Composition, Musicology, Performance (Voice and Instrumental), Music Therapy, Music Criticism and Music Publishing.

    Music Diploma Testimonials

    The Music Diploma and Conducting Certificate Programs at Capilano University are very well planned and excellent programs from which I have greatly benefited. Being a self-learned musician before entering these programs, I had a lot to learn in music theory, history, and ensemble performance. Although I was challenged by the course material, it was exactly what all the students needed to become disciplined students of music. These programs prepared me well for the rest of my degree and my professional endeavours. The extraordinarily supportive faculty demonstrated that their roles in student development extend beyond the classroom and into the community in the form of post-grad mentorship, team-building events, and friendship. Furthermore, the Music Diploma and Conducting Certificate programs, and their excellent faculty, awoke in me a passion for classical music that has been unparalleled in other musical genres and explored in choral, orchestral and opera performances, as well as in my own compositions.   

    Zac Goerlitz, Bachelor of Performing Arts, Music Diploma, Certificate in Conducting    

    I am so proud to say that I began my post-secondary musical journey at Cap. I have had the opportunity to study under some of the kindest, most supportive instructors, who are personally invested in the success of their students. After finishing the Music Diploma program, I decided to expand my knowledge of music and complete the Certificate in Conducting program. I am now embarking on a new journey in the Bachelor of Music Therapy program; all here at Cap! Not only have I had the opportunity to strengthen my musicianship, I have also grown as a person. I have learned how to use my intelligence in conjunction with my talents, I have learned to work in a team setting; separating competition from success, I have strengthened my courage in performance, I have built lasting friendships with my colleagues and instructors and am often surprised by my current level of openness to new experiences. The music department values potential, hard work, growth and uniqueness of the individual. I was incredibly lucky to have this experience and I will carry those memories with me for the rest of my life.   

    Tiffany Oakes-Dubé, Music Diploma, Certificate in Conducting    

    From the moment I started my education at Capilano, I felt immediately embraced and encouraged by the incredible faculty to do my best. Even at times where I fell behind, I was still helped to achieve my ultimate potential. Today, I am a secondary school music teacher, and I still reflect on my time spent at Capilano, and the incredible lessons I learned there. I wasn’t just taught about music, I was taught about new ways to appreciate and understand it. Even since my graduation from Capilano, I have been able to contact the faculty there, some of whom I have grown very close with over the years, and seek out advice and support on many levels and topics. When I am teaching my students, there are times when advice from the faculty at Capilano has come in very useful and handy. I will forever be thankful for the wonderful support and education I received at Capilano, and from the amazing faculty members there.  

    Adam Turpin, B.Mus., Music Diploma, Certificate in Conducting
    Music Teacher, School District 41

    The Diploma of Music program at Capilano University continues to provide direction for aspiring musicians within the Lower Mainland. As an alumnus, any young musician wishing to pursue classical music training at the university level should start their journey here. The program has been developed to grow each musician’s skills and talents by way of a comprehensive curriculum as well as private music instruction from talented professionals. The Diploma's curriculum lays down the fundamentals for every musician and provides students with the knowledge to determine their musical interests and creative direction. Faculty invests their time working with students to grow and explore their instrument and encourages them to better hone their craft. The location of the music department creates a stable and close environment that encourages musical collaboration and instills the importance of positive networking within the student body. Furthermore, faculty provides career advice and academic furtherance for musicians with varying interests and technical capabilities. The faculty is committed to supporting the students during their tenure and for years afterwards, which is perhaps the strongest feature of Capilano's program, as there is nothing more valuable to a young musician than a strong network of inspiring contacts.  

    Julie Nadalini, B.Mus., Music Diploma    

    After graduating high school I auditioned at two schools to pursue my education in music: UVic and Capilano University. Being my top choice, I was initially quite upset when UVic did not accept me into their program. Looking back I am grateful I attended Capilano University, as my two years in the Diploma of Music program set the standard for which I made sure the rest of my university career would emulate. Being a small program at a small school, the Diploma of Music students at Capilano University are offered an education experience many others are not. Not only do you get to know your classmates extremely well, you get to know your professors as educators, and as real people. The members of Capilano University’s Music faculty provide a thorough education taught with infectious passion. These professors genuinely care for their students, offering countless opportunities to progress in the program as well as out in the musical community of Vancouver. After earning a Music Diploma from Capilano University students are fully prepared to continue in whatever direction they choose, be it musical or not. All my credentials from Capilano University flawlessly transferred to Mount Allison University where I completed my Bachelors of Music with distinction. What is particularly unique to the music faculty of Capilano University is that they are as supportive of their students post graduation as they are while educating them. Many of my music professors from Capilano have become life-long mentors, co-workers, and friends. It is thanks to their support that I have been able to establish a full time career in music only 5 months after obtaining my Bachelors of Music. I cannot speak highly enough of Capilano University’s Diploma of Music Program, and recommend it to any person seeking an education in music that is as genuinely enjoyable as it is academically stimulating.  

    Rachel Buttress, B.Mus., Certificate in Conducting, Music Diploma

    For more information please contact Lars Kaario at 604-986-1911 (ext. 2309) or

    Lars choir


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