Melbourne Conservatorium of Music

Director's welcome

The Melbourne Conservatorium of Music is Australia’s oldest and most prestigious music institution. As the largest community of music students and academics in Australia, it plays a huge role in the future of our art form.

Our teachers are internationally recognised and well-connected professionals who are committed to challenging and inspiring our students to become future leaders in music. The scope of scholarly knowledge and performance expertise available to our students is also frequently augmented by visits from eminent colleagues from around the globe.

The Conservatorium enjoys extensive global networks and boasts an exceptionally high level of performance, all of which puts us at the forefront of music education, teaching and research in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.

Professor Gary McPherson, Ormond Chair of Music and Director, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music

In 2019, we took ownership of The Ian Potter Southbank Centre, a spectacular new nine-storey Conservatorium building in the heart of Melbourne's Arts Precinct. This cutting-edge facility allows us to train, perform and conduct research in new and exciting ways and complements our existing facilities in Parkville, such as the world-famous Melba Hall. It also allows us to connect more with our professional partner organisations, such as the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, with whom we run a Master of Music (Orchestral Performance), the first course of its kind in the Asia-Pacific region.

We would love to hear from you, and encourage you to stay connected through our social media channels, e-news, and by attending our many public events and performances throughout the year.

View the Conservatorium academic staff

Wominjeka

Welcome to the traditional lands of the Kulin Nations, where we draw on the strength of more than 1,000 generations of arts practice.

We respectfully acknowledge the people of the Boonwurrung and the Woi Wurrung, who have danced their dances, sung their songs and lived their culture on this land for tens of thousands of years.

Our heritage

The Faculty was created in 2009 following the amalgamation of the University's Faculty of Music and Faculty of the Victorian College of the Arts. It was renamed the Faculty of Fine Arts and Music in 2018 to reflect the primary undergraduate degree structures offered by the Faculty: the Bachelor of Music and the Bachelor of Fine Arts.

The Faculty is also home to the Wilin Centre for Indigenous Arts and Cultural Development, which works with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to identify, recruit and support potential and practicing Indigenous Artists to study and refine their academic and artistic skills.

The first Bachelor of Music at the University of Melbourne was awarded in 1879, and the Conservatorium was founded in 1894. Dame Nellie Melba laid the foundation stone for a permanent conservatorium building on the University’s Parkville campus in 1909, and the building was opened in 1913.

The Conservatorium today

The Conservatorium provides a comprehensive range of musical disciplines at undergraduate and graduate level, including Music Performance, Composition, Jazz and Improvisation, Early Music, Musicology, Ethnomusicology, Music Therapy, Music Psychology and Performance Science and New Music. Much of the Conservatorium's teaching, research and performance takes place in, or near, the new Ian Potter Southbank Centre on the University of Melbourne’s Southbank campus. Our facilities on the University's Parkville campus, including Melba Hall, are also used for teaching, research and performances.

Our Discipline Areas

Composition

Develop an original compositional voice. Explore the key concepts and techniques in music composition. Learn all phases of the composition process to create a professionally presented score.

Early Music

We house a vast collection of early music resources and scores, and train our students in instrumental and vocal performance.

Ethnomusicology

Seek to understand how and why current music-making in a global context is meaningful to its makers, owners and community. Engage with key issues in ethnomusicology, social, cultural and historical contexts.

Interactive Composition

Prepare for an intensive, commercially led, collaborative program that teaches you how to create music and sound for a range of contemporary media contexts and platforms.

Jazz and Improvisation

Celebrate great Australian Jazz and improvised music performance in a unique studio-intensive approach that nurtures future music performers and directors through repertoire, improvisation skills and technical studies.

Music Performance

Prepare for life as a professional musician. Learn and develop through weekly individual instrumental, vocal or composition lessons, instrument classes, and extensive solo and ensemble performance opportunities.

Music Psychology

Explore the ways that music impacts our emotions, relationships, brain and bodies using a range of research approaches to explore the connection between music and individuals.

Music Therapy

Combine music with health and wellbeing to become a registered music therapist. This graduate study teaches to you to engage with patients young and old while undertaking clinical placements in diverse settings.

Musicology

Examine why we like music, how it functions and what it means. Choose from a range of ensemble subjects to understand music-making within its social and cultural context. Engage with key issues in musicology, historical and current

New Music

The New Music Studio unites the disciplines of Composition and Performance for a broad range of contemporary music activities and events that are held each semester within the Faculty.

Research at the Conservatorium

Undertake scholarly, studio or performance-based research and practice within the Faculty of Fine Arts and Music. Discover opportunities for collaborative and interdisciplinary development.

Explore research