What can I study at the CMDA?

The CMDA offers training to aspirant musicians who plan to earn a living from their music.  We run an intensive course that provides a strong foundation in music, music theory, music appreciation, arranging and its role in society.  All students will be invest a significant amount of time in daily rehearsals and live performances.

Live performances will take place on completion of the Copper Course and will continue through to graduation.  On completion of the course, all graduates will be highly competent musicians and performers who will understand the dynamics of a band and will be accustomed to the hard work and dedication to achieve the levels of a professional.

How does it work?

Every six months, a new cohort of 30 or less students will be enrolled in the Copper Course.  The maximum class size will be 30. At full capacity, there will be a maximum of 150 students in the full time program.

We got to hang out with these young musos at the Casterbridge Music Development Academy (White River) recently & they are offering a full-time music course (includes song writing and live performances). Next course starts July 2017 (limited to 30 students aged 18 to 32). To enrol you will need to audition & they take place on 13 May. Contact Karen on 013 7513135 or karen@mpuma-music.org.za for more info. ✌️

What will I learn?

  • Band Development
  • Vocal coaching, music theory and piano
  • Form in Music
  • Music Arranging
  • Music in Society
  • Song Writing
  • Music Production
  • Presentation of self-composition through video
  • Orchestra Participation (optional)


Rehearsal Rooms

We have several fully equipped rehearsal rooms so you do not need to own your own equipment.  This includes computers loaded with ProTools, Sibelius and other software that you can use at any time.

eLearning Centre

We have a fully equipped digital centre that you will use to complete all your coursework including subjects such as Form in Music, Music Arranging, Music in Society etc.  You use this centre to complete and upload your portfolio work and here you have full internet access.

Stage and Theatre

We have a full stage and theatre that seats 350 where you can rehearse and perform. Major bands such as the Parlotones, Vusi Mahlasela and others regularly perform here and you will get to meet them and learn from them.


We have a full variety of instrumentation that are available for practicing at the academy. This includes pianos, digital keyboards and band instruments such as drums, bass guitars, electric guitars, speakers and microphones.

Video Recording Equipment

We have video cameras for you to film your project work, and edit suites where you can edit your videos. A major part of the course is original song writing and these you need to film, edit and submit for marking on a weekly basis.

Audio Recording Equipment

We have an on-site small digital studio where you can record your songs.  It is fully equipped with Logic, music equipment and where we can also film your recording.  Visit our studio page to find out more  here.


To apply, you have to audition. Our auditions are held at the Casterbridge Lifestyle Centre in White River, Mpumalanga. White River is near Nelspruit.


To book your place at the audition, you must call Karen on 013 7513135, email her at karen@mpuma-music.org.za or contact us through our contact form.