Michael was excellent at helping me address these (challenges) and explain a clear and efficient way of processing this information, and most importantly, how to put this into practice in a constructive manner when engaging with your players. - Jack Christie, Aberdeen, Scotland

Michael Zaugg is dedicated to and passionate about the education of choral conductors. 'Educating the leaders of tomorrow' is his pedagogical motto. Since the inaugural Montreal Choral Masterclass (MCM), Michael has taught over 40 choral conductors from across Canada, the United States, Europe and South America, including the apprentice of the National Youth Choir of Canada, Kathleen Allan. 

It is so critically important to have the professional choirs in Canada involved in conductor training and what Pro Coro is offering with this program has great value and impact.  It was a great balance of hands-on experience, expert instruction, and mentorship that was both challenging and immensely rewarding. - Heather Fraser, Nova Scotia

With Pro Coro Canada, Michael Zaugg has established the Emerging Artist program #connect, which mentors singers, composers and conductors. As part of #connect, Michael developped a program for emerging choral singers, that leads into an internship possibility with Pro Coro Canada. Over the course of one season, there are also three or four emerging conductors accompaning the work fo Michael and Pro Coro Canada througout one production. These young artists are giving ample podium time with the professional ensemble. Emerging composer spend several weeks with the choir and Michael Zaugg to learn new aesthetics and sonorities.

Through this program, I have made significant progress in choral composing, conducting, and singing, which I am honoured to bring back to my own community. Combining so many artistic benefits with the ability to coordinate the logistics of a visitor's itinerary is truly a rare accomplishment that any choral artist would be very fortunate to experience. - Cy Giacomin, Ontario

Participants in the Montreal Choral Masterclass work with the professional ensemble voces boreales and a selection of local amateur groups, i.e. the St. Lawrence Choir, La Ceilagh Chamber Singers or Les Muses (women's choir). The Iwan Edwards Award is a prize created by the St. Lawrence Choir to support the participation of a conductor at the MCM. Past recipients include: Rob Curtis, DMA (Alberta), Claire Mallin, DMA (Nova Scotia), and Melissa Morgan, DMA (Ontario). The MCM is currently under the tutelage of Professor Andrew Megill.

MCM 1

Besides gestural work, score study and rehearsal technique, the conductors also engage in in-depth ear-training sessions, either as a group or in front of the choirs. This element is a unique part of Michael's work, training the aural skill set of participants.

MCM 2

Michael Zaugg has also showcased his curriculum at PODIUM, the ACCC's national conference. 'Hearing the trees through the forest' is the title of an aural training workshop aimed at developing the conductors perception of sound, dynamics, colour and intonation.

He has a vibrant private studio offering weekly lessons, project-based coaching and long-term mentoring. His students appreciate his hands-on approach and his vast knowledge of repertoire.

© Michael Zaugg 2017