Music Schools and Programs in Belgium

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Music Studies in Belgium

Belgium, officially referred to as the Kingdom of Belgium, is a federal monarchy and sovereign nation located in the western portion of the European continent.  The country is a founding member of the European Union and plays host not only to that organization’s headquarters but also to those of several other major international organizations, including NATO.  The territory of Belgium encompasses a total area of just under 12,000 square miles (30,528 square km) and is home to a population of approximately 11 million permanent inhabitants.

Belgium is situated at the intersection of Germanic and Latin Europe.  As such, the country is home to two main linguistic groups: the Dutch-speaking, mostly Flemish community (which constitutes about 59% of the population), and the French-speaking, mostly Walloon population (which comprises 41% of all Belgians).  In addition, there is a small group of German-speakers in the country who are officially recognized. Belgium's two largest regions are the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders, located in the country’s north; and the French-speaking southern region of Wallonia.  The Brussels-Capital Region, which is officially bilingual, is a mostly French-speaking enclave within the Flemish Region. The aforementioned German-speaking community exists in eastern Wallonia.  Belgium's linguistic diversity and related political conflicts are reflected in its political history and complex system of government.

Music Education in Belgium

Students interested in earning a degree in music in Belgium may enter undergraduate (bachelor's degree) and/or graduate (master's degree) programs that focus on music in general, or on topics such as performance, composition, education, production or music business.  Admissions criteria, coursework and career options depend on the degree level and the specific focus a student chooses.

The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) degree program in Music is designed to expose students to various aspects of music, both conceptual and practical. Because it is not considered a professional music degree, students in these programs may take fewer core courses than music performance majors.  Depending on the course offerings available, graduates may gain skills and knowledge focusing on a full range of topics, from music education to music history.  Most B.A. programs in music prepare graduates to pursue a variety of careers in the music industry.

To qualify for admittance into one of the Belgian BA programs students must hold a secondary school diploma or its equivalent. Many programs also require students to have some type of musical background.
The curriculum of the Music program emphasizes music performance, theory, history and philosophy through such courses as:
  • Musicianship
  • Modern music
  • Ensemble performance
  • Baroque music history
  • Women in music
  • And more…
Graduates of music Bachelor of Arts programs are eligible for a wide variety of entry-level music careers, including those that focus on music therapy, journalism and criticism, music library work and audio engineering.

Why Study Abroad in Belgium

Belgium is a wonderful place in which to study and live for a time, and its universities are ranked among the best in the world.  Not only will students gain a fresh academic and world perspective when studying in Belgium, they will also be afforded the opportunity to visit all the splendid sights and attractions the country has to offer, not the least of which are:

Abbaye de la Cambre

The village of Ixelles in Belgium originated with the foundation of the Abbaye de la Cambre, which was established by the Sisters of the Cistercian Order in the Middle Ages. The abbey was initially situated close to the springs of the Maelbeek River in the Sonian Forest, and today the remaining part of that older abbey, known as Bois de la Cambre, adjoins the city of Brussels.  
Not long after the foundation of Abbaye de la Cambre, the convent was consecrated by the Bishop of Cambrai.  Following centuries of mostly undisturbed existence, the abbey was closed in the course of the French Revolution of 1797 and the buildings, the majority of them dating from the 18th Century, were left abandoned.  In 1921 the abbey was taken over by the Ligue des Amis de la Cambre and thoroughly restored.
The village of Ixelles, where the abbey is located, is one of the loveliest parts of Brussels, offering a perfect getaway from the rush and bustle of the city, with the charming Bois de la Cambre, parks, ponds and walking paths. Nestling in a sheltered hollow between Bois de la Cambre and the Ixelles Ponds (the small lakes located at the end of the Chaussee d’Ixelles), Abbaye de la Cambre is the district’s best known landmark and well worth a visit.
Archives and French Literature Museum
The Archives and French Literature Museum comprises four sections devoted to the archives and history of Belgian literature, spanning poetry, foreign literature, drama and audiovisual arts. The museum's section of Belgian letters features more than 7,000 archive files and some 15,000 books.
The international library of literature has some 75,000 books and a long line of special funds, featuring one dedicated to central Africa. The archives focus on French-speaking Belgian dramatists and drama. The drama section has a library of published and typed plays featuring works by Maeterlinck, de Ghelderode, Crommelynck and Closson. The audiovisual part features sound recordings and archives of literary and theatrical activities in French-speaking Belgium, as well as a sound, picture and video library, where visitors can search for portraits of writers and information on various artistic movements.
Autoworld Brussels
Car enthusiasts simply must check out the attraction known as Autoworld Brussels. This fun Belgian attraction showcases the 100-year history of automobiles, with more than 400 vehicles displayed in five expositions. The museum is housed in a steel construction of the former Palais Mondial, an early 20th-century edifice designed by architect Gédéon Bordiau.  Here guests will find vast ensembles of various auto models, including animal-drawn vehicles, steam or electric traction cars, and gas powered automobiles.
The museum was set up in 1984 from the personal collection of Ghislain Mahy and Charly De Pauw.  The collection claims to be Europe's largest ensemble devoted to vintage cars; a place where nearly all the Belgian names sit alongside popular European and U.S. models. The highlights of the collection include the vehicle designed by automobile pioneer Léon Bollée (1896); a mass-produced Ford Model T; a VW Beetle; and the Citroen 2CV; all of which rub shoulders with vehicles and motorcycles that once belonged to Belgian royals.

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