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R. Murray Schafer joins Royal Conservatory

Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer has been named composer-in-residence for the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.

Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer has been named composer-in-residence for the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.

Schafer, 77, a Governor General's Award winner known for his Patria and String Quartet series, is to compose new works for faculty and students of the school and teach a course in 20th and 21st century music.

Schafer has taught previously at Memorial University in Newfoundland and Simon Fraser in B.C. and his music education theories have been studied around the world.

The Royal Conservatory said Schafer would also coach performing ensembles at the school and help students in their approach to new music from a variety of cultures.

Schafer has a long association with the conservatory. He studied harpsichord, music theory, and piano there from 1945-55, with renowned teacher Alberto Guerrero, and his Spirits of the House was selected as the premiere presentation for the opening of the school's Koerner Hall last year.

An artist with a wide range of interests, Schafer has composed for theatre and created  multimedia productions as well as choral pieces, chamber music and orchestral compositions.

His composition Four Forty will be performed by the award-winning Cecilia String Quartet in Koerner Hall as part of Toronto's Nuit Blanche celebration Oct. 2.