Canadian Music Council

Founded in 1946 and incorporated in 1949, it was chaired from 1947-1966 by Sir Ernest MACMILLAN, followed for shorter terms by Arnold WALTER, Jean PAPINEAU-COUTURE, John P.L. Roberts, Françoys Bernier and others. Essentially an umbrella organization for the musical profession, the council represented organizations of national scope, university departments and selected individuals. In its earlier phase it concentrated on exchanging information among members, identifying the needs of the profession and lobbying for what was to become the CANADA COUNCIL. It also presented a Canadian voice on the world scene, becoming the Canadian member of the International Music Council in 1952. Its publications were a survey of many fields of musical activity, as seen, for example, in Music in Canada, edited by the chairman in 1955, its updating, Aspects of Music in Canada/Aspects de la musique au Canada, by Arnold Walter in 1969 /1970, the quarterly Canadian Music Journal, 1956-1962, followed by The Canada Music Book/Les Cahiers canadiens de musique, 1970-1976 and Musicanada, 1976-1989.

The council, with the guidance of the CANADIAN LEAGUE OF COMPOSERS, created the CANADIAN MUSIC CENTRE in 1959. In 1965 it held the first of many annual conferences on topics of broad interest (eg, competitions, folk music or music in broadcasting). In 1971 the council instituted a medal for distinguished service to Canadian music. In 1976 it established a secretariat in Ottawa, but faced with a growing deficit and realizing that many of its members no longer needed an "umbrella" in dealing with governments and granting agencies, it suspended operations in 1990. Its records are housed at the NATIONAL LIBRARY OF CANADA.