Conservatory Opens

Reverend Robert Laing founded the Conservatory of Music with the Halifax Ladies College.  It was founded under Chapter 91 of the Acts of the Legislature of Nova Scotia. Location was the Halifax Ladies College on Pleasant St (now Barrington St.) Our doors opened on September 15, 1887.

Above photo is The Halifax Ladies College, our original home.


Dalhousie University’s senate grants the Conservatory the right to confer the degree of Bachelor of Music

The Gray Sister

Conservatory moved to The Grey Sister located at the corner of Spring Garden Road and Summer Street.



The Halifax Conservatory of Music was incorporated by a special act of the Province of Nova Scotia.

St. Mary's College

Conservatory moved to St. Mary’s College on Windsor St. located behind St. Pat’s High School.

Early 30's

Maritime Academy of Music

Harry Dean left the Halifax Conservatory of Music to establish the Maritime Academy of Music. Located at the Phillae Temple at 5835 College Street.

Ballet Department Founded

Irene Apine and Juis Gotshalks formed the Ballet Department.


Gunter Buchta Director

Gunter Buchta directed the Dance Department. He started the Buchta Dancers who were regulars on Don Messer’s Jubilee show on the CBC.

Halifax Ladies College

Dissolved our connection with the Halifax Ladies College.



On August 1, 1954, the Halifax Conservatory of Music bought the assets of the Halifax Conservatory of Music and changed our name to Maritime Conservatory of Music. 

Affiliation with Dalhousie University ends with founding of their own music program.


The Oaks

St. Mary’s College sold to the city. Conservatory moved to The Oaks at 5920 Gorsebrook Ave.

Sacred Heart School

Conservatory moved to Sacred Heart School on Spring Garden Road.


Our Building

Conservatory moved to present location at the Old Chebucto Road School. This large 20th century Classical Revival brick building was built on the site where formerly Barnum and Bailey had pitched circus tents. Designed by Walter Busch and constructed (1908-1910) by Marshall and Sons, the fourteen-classroom Chebucto School cost $95,000. It was Halifax’s largest and finest school. During the Halifax Explosion, the basement was used as a morgue for hundreds of bodies, and mass funerals were held on the grounds. After the school’s 1975 closure, the building housed the city’s school music programme, before becoming home to the Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts in 1996. (G.P.Brooks, PhD)

Name Changed

Conservatory changed our name to Maritime Conservatory of Performing Arts.


Conservatory Name Approved

Our name was legally changed by the Province of Nova Scotia under The Maritime Conservatory Reorganization Act.