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Wilfrid Laurier University Faculty of  Music
December 4, 2016
Canadian Excellence

Laurier Dean of Music Glen Carruthers (left) with NYOC Executive Director Barbara Smith.
Laurier Dean of Music Glen Carruthers (left) with NYOC Executive Director Barbara Smith.

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Faculty of Music

Laurier becomes long-term home for National Youth Orchestra of Canada’s Summer Training Institute

Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing

Apr 21/14| For Immediate Release


Glen Carruthers, Dean of Music
Wilfrid Laurier University
519-884-0710 ext. 2151 or


Barbara Smith, Executive Director
National Youth Orchestra of Canada
416-532-4470 ext. 222 or

WATERLOO – Following a successful first season together in 2013, Wilfrid Laurier University and the National Youth Orchestra of Canada have entered into a long-term commitment to hold the NYOC’s annual Summer Training Institute at Laurier’s Waterloo campus.  

“Last year was the first time we held the NYOC’s Summer Training Institute at Laurier, and Dean of Music Glen Carruthers, together with the university’s faculty and staff, have been so welcoming that we are thrilled to be invited to make Laurier our new home,” said NYOC Executive Director Barbara K. Smith. “The response from the community was so enthusiastic last summer that all of us look forward to returning to Laurier again and again and to further developing our partnership. Our musicians, staff and faculty love Laurier and the Waterloo community.”

Founded in 1960, the NYOC is Canada’s preeminent national training orchestra, recruiting the best classical musicians from age 16 to 28 from across Canada and offering them training and mentoring from renowned professional orchestral musicians. Each year, approximately 500 applicants from across the country audition for 90 to 100 coveted positions in the orchestra. Close to 40 per cent of Canada’s professional orchestral musicians are alumni of the NYOC, including members of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the National Arts Centre Orchestra, the Calgary Philharmonic and the Montreal, Edmonton and Vancouver Symphonies, as well as other orchestras and ensembles in Canada and around the world. 

“Laurier is very proud to host this iconic Canadian cultural institution on a continuing basis. The NYOC has played a pivotal role in the lives of so many Canadian musicians, its stellar reputation is richly deserved,” said Glen Carruthers, dean of Laurier’s Faculty of Music. “Laurier offers one of Canada’s outstanding post-secondary music programs and the NYOC is one of the world’s top training orchestras. There is a natural synergy between Laurier and the NYOC, which both prepare exceptional musicians for successful and sustainable professional careers.” 

The NYOC’s Summer Training Institute takes place in June and July and includes extensive instruction, tutorials and rehearsals for chamber music and full orchestra performance. The Institute also offers lectures and seminars on topics of importance to professional orchestral musicians such as audition skills, career development and injury prevention and musician wellness. The Summer Training Institute culminates in a national concert tour with performances in key cities such as Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver in addition to Waterloo Region, as well as a professional recording session to produce the NYOC’s annual music CD. Internationally renowned conductor Emmanuel Villaume will conduct the NYOC in 2014.  

The NYOC will perform chamber music and a full orchestra concert in Laurier’s Maureen Forrester Recital Hall and full orchestra performances at Kitchener’s Centre in the Square and other communities in Waterloo Region. Concert dates will be announced at and at

Celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2015, Wilfrid Laurier University’s Faculty of Music is passionate about music and the successful future of its students. With a 350-person student body, the Faculty of Music admits the top candidates from across Canada and abroad. In 2013, Laurier was named Canada’s Best Music Campus by CBC Radio. Laurier’s nourishing environment allows faculty members to inspire the academic and performance-based achievements of their students. Faculty of Music alumni are achieving diverse and innovative musical successes across multiple industries and around the world. Laurier’s Faculty of Music offers the only undergraduate and graduate Music Therapy program in Ontario and in 2013 introduced the Master of Arts in Community Music. 

For more than 50 years, the National Youth Orchestra of Canada has enjoyed an iconic reputation as Canada’s orchestral finishing school, providing the most comprehensive and in-depth training program available to our country’s best young classical musicians. As the bridge between music education and a music career, NYOC trains well-rounded and skilled orchestral musicians who are able to thrive in a variety of performance environments. More performers in Canada’s professional orchestras are alumni of the NYOC than any other institute or university. NYOC is proud to host Canada’s only summer institute that offers a comprehensive training program, concert tour, and recording session to participants with no tuition required. Each student chosen from auditions is supported by scholarship funding provided by NYOC’s generous donors.


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