What you need to know

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.

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, but this will reduce to approximately 20 students due to attrition of students; many drop out for financial reasons and others for personal reasons.

At full capacity, there will be a maximum of 150 students in the full time program.  In terms of facilities:

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.



We use professional coaches to provide band development training, vocal coaching, music theory and piano.

We have many piano’s and keyboards and other instruments that you can use to practise.


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.


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.



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.



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.



All visiting bands and performers run masterclasses with our students.  Here they tell you their journey and is a forum where you can learn from them and see how they prepare for a concert.


Finally, if you are interested  in performing in our local community orchestra, we have one of those too.  The orchestra performs several times per year and consist of local musicians from the community that come together for the love of music.


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 or email her at karen@mpuma-music.org.za

We do offer bursaries, but you have to be really good (as in brilliant) at playing an instrument.  Otherwise we may provide you financial assistance if you can demonstrate a genuine financial need.  Please note that if you are provided financial assistance or a bursary, it covers your costs of attendance only and NOT accommodation or food.  If you are absent, you will be required to pay the full fee for the days that you absent.  If you drop out, you will be required to refund the bursary in full.  This is a program for students who are serious only.