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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
December 9, 2016
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Laurier to host summit on music’s role in the community

Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing

Jan 30/14| For Immediate Release


Lee Willingham, Associate Professor
Faculty of Music
519-884-0710 ext. 3621 or


Lori Chalmers Morrison, Acting Director
Communications & Public Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University
519-884-0710 ext. 3067 or

WATERLOO – The Laurier Centre for Music in the Community (LCMC) and the Wise Voices for Music project will host a public summit Feb. 1 to explore the role music plays in our community and publicly launch Laurier's Master of Arts in Community Music. Craig Norris, host of CBC KW’s Morning Edition, and Luisa D’Amato, columnist for The Waterloo Region Record, will be joined by local cultural leaders and experts in the arts to help develop a strategic plan for community music. 

“There is a great deal of excitement mounting about this summit,” said Lee Willingham, Laurier associate professor and director of the LCMC. “People from a wide variety of backgrounds and ages want to share their love for music and the power it brings to their daily lives."

Among the facilitators of the summit are Stephen Preece, Laurier associate professor and president of the Grand River Jazz Society; Shelley Adams, director: strategic planning and community integration at Creative Enterprise Initiatives and Elaine Wetherup, field experience officer and principal: additional qualifications in Laurier’s Faculty of Education.

Keynote speaker Lee Higgins, an associate professor of music education at Boston University’s College of Fine Arts, will open the summit at 1 p.m. with his address, “Community Music as Cultural Capital: Non-formal Music Experiences and Young People,” and will later wrap up the event with his perspectives on the summit.

As part of the summit, Norris will emcee the annual Laurier Centre for Music in the Community awards presentations at a reception in the Maureen Forrester Recital Hall at 4:30 p.m.

The summit also serves as the public launch of Laurier’s Master of Arts in Community Music, a part-time, interdisciplinary program that balances theory and practice for the development of leadership skills in community music. The program is designed to attract community leaders who are engaged in creating or making music with diverse populations in schools, places of worship, private studios, seniors’ homes or community centres. The program accepted its first students in fall 2013.

The day will conclude with a Laurier Choral Concert featuring the Laurier Singers, the Maureen Forrester Singers, the Laurier Concert Choir and the Grand Philharmonic Youth Choir. The concert will be held at 8 p.m. at the First United Church, 16 William St. West, Waterloo. 

The summit takes place Saturday, Feb. 1 in the John Aird Centre on Wilfrid Laurier University’s Waterloo campus. Admission is free. To register, contact Mieke Barette at 

Tickets for the Laurier Choral Concert can be purchased at the door for $10 or $5 for non-Laurier students and seniors. Laurier students, staff and faculty and local high school students can attend the show free of charge. 


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