‘New Audiences and Innovative Practice’: An International Master’s Programme with Critical Reflection and Mentoring at the Heart of an Artistic Laboratory
The European music profession is rapidly changing and suggests more flexible career patterns and a need for transferable skills and lifelong learning strategies. Musicians collaborate increasingly with practitioners in other arts and societal cross-sector settings. These issues create challenges and implications for higher music education (Smilde, 2009b). This state of play was point of departure in 2006 for the development of the collaborative European master’s New Audiences and Innovative Practice (NAIP) by five European conservatoires. Five schools, from Iceland, the UK, the Netherlands and Finland, devised an innovative twoyear master’s programme to enable students to develop and lead creative projects in diverse artistic, community and cross-sectoral settings, thereby creating new audiences and developing their leadership and collaborative skills in varied artistic and social contexts. The full programme has now been running for two years and aims to provide future professional musicians with the skills and knowledge to become artistically flexible practitioners, able to adjust to new contexts within a wide range of situations of societal relevance.