New Music and Performing Arts and Contemporary Art degrees complete a suite of four new degrees designed to take Waikato Institute of Technology students into work in the creative sector.

The two new, specialised degrees which join Bachelor of Design and Bachelor of Communication start this month at Wintec's School of Media Arts.

Head of Wintec School of Media Arts Sam Cunnane says the new suite of creative degrees will set the stage for future careers in the arts, design, communication music and performing arts sector.

"We're not offering your usual tertiary programme. This is a response to the needs of a changing world and the demands of a future workplace that requires people who can work together, think creatively and solve problems."

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The new Bachelor of Music and Performing Arts degree includes theatre, audio production, composition and performance. For Wintec music team manager and theatre director David Sidwell, it's a dream come true.

Wintec will become the only tertiary institution in the North Island to offer a specialist degree that covers acting, singing, and dancing.

Sidwell says staying true to Wintec's philosophy of real-world learning, the degree will be taught away from the classroom and on the stage.

"This is a unique opportunity for students to learn theatre in this way. There is nothing like this degree on offer in the North Island. One of the points of difference is that we will teach in a theatre environment. Students will not be in a classroom, they will be on stage."

"In their first year, the theatre students' classroom will be at Hamilton's Meteor Theatre, the second year will be spent learning at Clarence Street Theatre and the third year at the new Waikato Regional Theatre."

"I've taught music at Wintec for almost 18 years, and I have a long history as a theatre director for the past 30 years, so this degree means I can share my passion for music and theatre, and help others hone their professional skills."

The programme has been developed, led and taught by Sidwell, Kyle Chuen and Nick Braae, who, alongside other Music department tutors, have many years professional experience in musical theatre around New Zealand and internationally.

The course will cover the fundamentals of acting technique, use of the voice and movement, along with theatre history, music history and musicianship skills.

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Students can apply for the course until 18 February.

The new degree will mean students spend the majority of their time in the studio bringing ideas to life. Students will create relevant work by exploring painting, photography, screen-based media, installation, street art, sculpture, curation or illustration.

"From the start, students will be connecting with specialists and mentors, problem solving and learning about the professional and cultural context their work operates in."

Wintec School of Media Arts degree programmes
Bachelor of Contemporary Art
Bachelor of Communication
Bachelor of Design (Fashion)
Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)
Bachelor of Music and Performing Arts
To enrol visit Wintec's website: here.