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Home / News / Report from ISME Commission on the Education of the Professional Musician
Report from ISME Commission on the Education of the Professional Musician
18 Sep 2017

Pamela D. Pike
Chair, Commission for the Education of the Professional Musician

Vision of the CEPROM Commission
Undergirding the vision of the ISME Commission on the Education of the Professional Musician (CEPROM) is the belief that any discussion or action pertaining to the education and training of professional musicians must be sensitive to the roles and status that musicians have in various societies and cultures. Of equal importance is the attention to the value systems in those societies and cultures that drive the choices concerning music, education and the arts in a broader sense.

Mission of the CEPROM Commission
The mission of the CEPROM Commission is to engage in and promote a variety of activities in international and local settings that:

  • Focus on the professional musician as one who accepts responsibility for advancing and disseminating music as an integral part of life, and whose engagements with music reflects perception, understanding, appreciation and mastery in a manner that conveys meaning to people
  • Foster the recognition of the many modes of educating and training musicians as practiced by various societies and cultures
  • Emphasise strategies through which educators can prepare musicians for the continually changing roles of the musician in various contexts, societies and cultures
  • Raise awareness and develop an appreciation of matters pertaining to the general health and welfare of musicians

CEPROM Commission Activities
The CEPROM Commission hosts an International seminar immediately preceding each international ISME world conference. We encourage all of our members and participants to continue on to the ISME world conference, where they share their research with the larger community through poster sessions.

To date, there have been 21 CEPROM pre-conference seminars. Our most recent seminar took place at the University of St. Andrew’s, Scotland. Over 35 participants from Asia, Australia, Europe, North and South America, and the United Kingdom reflected on papers, research posters and performed research. Each seminar features dynamic discussion and shared insights that we bring back to our own communities of teaching, practice and music-making prompted by our reading of the blind peer-reviewed papers and presentations. Break-out sessions and open “white space” for sharing common issues from a global perspective provide opportunities for deeper understanding and exploration of ideas.

Topics for each seminar address educating our students for the varied careers in which they may engage as professional musicians. Recent seminars have focused on “relevance and reform in the education of professional musicians” (2014) and “leadership in the education of the professional musician” (2016). Examples of threads explored in 2016 included:

  • Transformative pedagogy in the teaching studio, where students could learn about leadership that is facilitative, directive and integrative
  • Helping our undergraduates and post-graduates develop leadership skills
  • Facilitating leadership development by interweaving of a student’s experiences with adaptive teaching, learning and musical skills

Publications of the CEPROM Commission
Following each pre-conference seminar, the papers and research poster abstracts are edited and assembled into a CEPROM Commission Proceedings. Past proceedings may be accessed and downloaded from the ISME web site under Menu/Publications/Other Publications or by clicking here: CEPROM Pre-conference seminar 2016 and CEPROM pre-conference seminar 2014.

Additionally, research and projects resulting from collaboration and discussion amongst seminar participants have been published separately following some of our seminars. One notable publication, with contributions from CEPROM seminar participants, is Life in the Real World: How to Make Music Graduates Employable edited by Dawn Bennett and published in 2012 by Common Ground Publishing LLC. As part of a projected ISME series with Routledge, a publication on Leadership in Higher Music Education, edited by Bennett, Rowley and Schmidt and which will include contributions from participants from the 2016 CEPROM seminar, is forthcoming.

Upcoming CEPROM Pre-conference Seminar
We hope that you will submit proposals and join us for our 22nd pre-conference seminar in a location that will provide a rich cultural context for our discussions.

Kurmangazy Kazakh National Conservatory (Almaty, Kazakhstan)

11-13 July 2018

The 22nd Pre-Conference Seminar of CEPROM will explore how musicians make and experience music throughout their lives, acknowledging that perspectives, needs and goals change across the professional lifespan. In training students to become musicians and music educators, relatively little attention is given to the management of a career throughout its entire trajectory. During the CEPROM Pre-Conference Seminar, we will explore issues related to sustaining a musical career across a lifetime and how we might prepare young musicians to deal with these important matters.

We will consider broad cultural viewpoints.

Theme and Topics:

The Musician’s Career Lifespan

We encourage submission of papers, posters and performed research (see full call for proposals) on matters pertaining to the musician’s career lifespan. Topics might include:

  • Characteristics and negotiation of work across the career lifespan
  • Sustaining a performing career
  • Planning for changes when a performing career can no longer be maintained
  • Effectively managing a portfolio career when the family-work balance changes in different stages of life
  • Dealing with issues of relevance, identity and job satisfaction at different life stages and through career shifts
  • Responding to changes in the music industry, including technology and unforeseen transformations

Wellness and wellbeing

  • Issues of health across the lifespan
  • The effect of expected physical changes upon musical careers
  • Fulfillment in mature-career and post-career musicians

Ageing and the musician

  • Financial preparation for retirement
  • Emotional preparation for retirement

CEPROM Commissioners (2016-18)

  • Dawn Bennett – Australia 
  • Tania Lisboa – Brazil/United Kingdom 
  • Annie Mitchell – Australia 
  • Heidi Partti – Finland 
  • Pamela Pike (Chair) – Canada/USA
  • Janis Weller – USA

Follow CEPROM on Facebook and through the ISME website (under Menu/Our Work/Commissions & Forum and the scroll down to the relevant box) or  by clicking here