Higher Music Education and the Introduction of Music Business Programmes
As music educators it is our predominant objective to nurture not only the future talent of the music industry but also the infrastructure that will support that talent. This may be achieved by instilling, in the general population, a passion for music and an understanding of the music creation process, resulting in audiences that are more educated and professionals who will be able to deal with musicians with greater empathy. Based on earlier research, I determined that music degrees in South Africa are not adequately preparing graduates for all the eventualities they will encounter once they articulate into careers in music and there are presently no degrees offered in the country that cater to the training of future music business leaders. The value of higher education coupled with talks about the decolonisation of education have made it essential that higher music programmes are re-evaluated to ascertain their relevance in the new knowledge economy and the fourth industrial revolution. Whilst a place for higher music qualifications, in their current iterations, still exists, there is space for the creation of new programmes that will offer prospective students a greater array of entry points into higher music education. These programmes may assist in increasing participation rates in music departments at South African universities and generating music managers with a greater understanding of music creation and musicians, ultimately supporting transformation in higher music education in the country. In this paper, I will explore some of my research findings and suggestions pertaining to the prospective transformation of higher music education in South Africa.