Diploma in Contemporary Music Performance

Programme details

Translation Te Pōkairua Puuoro o te Waa
Code WR3084
Level 5
Credits 120
Duration 1 year
IntakesSemester 1
Study options Full-time
LocationRotorua (Mokoia)
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Programme aim

Do you want to enter and/or progress within the music industry, both within New Zealand and internationally?

This programme develops graduates with comprehensive knowledge, skills, and capability in applied professional music performance, song writing, musical arrangement and music production including the use of technology, communication and instrumentation.

Graduates will be able to function either individually or in groups in much the same manner as a professional artist or band would work within the music industry, and may also pursue further higher-level study in music performance, music production, sound engineering or related fields.

Career opportunities

Professional artist or band

Award information

To achieve the award of the Diploma in Contemporary Music Performance, students must complete a total of 120 compulsory credits and a minimum of sixteen live performance hours.

Knowledge and skills you will gain

Graduates will be able to:

  • demonstrate proficiency on their specialist instrument;
  • perform within an instrumental ensemble to an industry standard (commensurate with paid performance work at small to medium sized venues as are commonly found in the New Zealand music industry);
  • demonstrate advanced techniques of sequencing and recording using computer based software;
  • demonstrate and apply an advanced knowledge of music theory to song writing and song arrangement within ensembles and technological environments;
  • apply time management and self direction to meet performance deadlines;
  • communicate effectively within performance groups and with allied technical staff (studio and live sound engineers);
  • demonstrate an awareness of the Treaty of Waitangi, and an awareness and appreciation of Māori cultural identity;
  • demonstrate advanced techniques of song writing including word setting and structure;
  • demonstrate an advanced understanding of the ethics, attitudes and values inherent in both the local and international music industry; and
  • be capable, through the academic platform they have achieved, of undertaking further tertiary studies in music.

Entry criteria

Admission and entry requirements for this qualification are in accordance with the academic regulations.

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Compulsory courses

Course details
CREA.5001 Critical Studies for Creative Contexts
Students will develop analytical skills and critical thinking on historical and contemporary theories and practices relevant to creative contexts. Students will also examine indigenous, local and global traditions, historical movements and milestones, and ethnic and cultural influences on creative practice, including Te Tiriti o Waitangi/the Treaty of Waitangi.
Credits 15 Intakes Semester 2
MUSC.5002 Music Notation, Pitch, Harmony and Rhythm
Students will develop capability and application in advanced music notation, pitch, harmony and rhythm to improve instrument performance. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the clear advantages these particular skills give the musician and artist in the pursuit of musical excellence.
Credits 30 Intakes Semester 1
MUSC.5003 Music Production
Students will develop skills and capability in using electronic technology, sound engineering, multi-track recording and cinematic post-production to enhance personal expression and broaden commercial opportunities.
Credits 15 Intakes Semester 2
MUSC.5004 Music Industry Practice
Students will explore methods for funding, promoting and disseminating their own musical product in the New Zealand music industry and strategic global markets using the internet and other methods. Students will also explore different methods of music tuition and the practical application of these methods.
Credits 15 Intakes Semester 1
MUSC.6001 Applied Music Performance
Students will develop capability in rehearsing and performing original or cover material to an acceptable and commercially viable industry standard. Students will also gain an insight into the challenges associated with working in an artistic environment including planning, organising, promoting and setting-up music gigs and tours.
Credits 30 Intakes Semester 1
MUSC.6002 Composition, Arrangement and Performance: Primary Instrumentation
Students will build performance skills on their respective instruments with focused one-to-one tuition using itinerant or in-house instrumental specialists. Students will also extend their ability to compose and analyse musical arrangements. They will study various approaches and techniques in several song writing and composition tasks, and develop knowledge of the...
Credits 15 Intakes Semester 1


*Course cost: Standard fee for New Zealand residents only. Fees for non-New Zealand residents will vary, visit the International Programmes and Tuition Fees information page.

Page last updated: 01 Sep 2017