What can I study at the CMDA?

The CMDA offers training to aspirant musicians who want 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 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 intake of 30 or less students will be enrolled in the Copper Course. The maximum class size is 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

You do not need to provide your own equipment as the Academy has several fully equipped rehearsal rooms. This includes computers loaded with ProTools, Sibelius and other software that you can use at any time.

e-Learning 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. The centre has full internet access and you will complete and upload your portfolio work here.

Stage and Theatre

There is a full stage and a theatre seating 350 people 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 and learn from them.


The Academy has a full variety of instruments available for practicing on at the academy. They include 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 you need to film, edit and submit your songs for marking on a weekly basis.

Audio Recording Equipment

There is a small on-site digital studio where you can record your music and we can film your recording session. The studio is fully equipped with Logic and music equipment. 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.