By Whitney Sharp

L to R: Andrea Pedro, Alexander Chernata, Julie Lin
L to R: Andrea Pedro, Alexander Chernata, Julie Lin

Move over Mozart, Kwantlen Polytechnic University’s (KPU) dynamic AJA Trio are taking the classical music scene by storm. KPU music students, Alexander Chernata and Andrea Pedro, and local community member Julie Lin, are breaking records and playing their way to the top.

The trio, who have competed in local, provincial, and national competitions, became the first group (and first group from KPU) to place first at the 45th National Music Festival, hosted by the Federation of Canadian Music Festivals. Besides their national win, the group also placed first at the Annual Young Musicians Competition, and won Senior Ensemble First Prize in the open chamber ensemble section of the Vancouver Kiwanis Festival.

The university’s Langley campus houses the range of music programs available, including a bachelor of music in musical arts (BMMA) degree, a music diploma, associate of arts degree in music, and elective music courses for those majoring in other subjects. KPU Langley features dedicated music classrooms, teaching studios, and practice rooms designed for music students, as well as performance spaces.

The music degree focuses primarily on Western classical music, with opportunities for students to explore jazz, pop, and world music. In addition to extensive training in various disciplines (brass, guitar, percussion, piano, strings, woodwinds, and voice) students can expand their music education with courses in the history of music, the business of music, approaches to music education, and the psychophysiology of music performance. Students are prepared for a variety of music-based careers including multiple disciplines including performance, education, composition, advertising and business.

Students who do not want to pursue an undergraduate degree are able to exit the music program with a diploma after completing the necessary lower level requirements. The music diploma features six different concentrations including general studies, comprehensive studies, guitar performance, orchestral instrument performance, piano performance, and vocal performance.

The Faculty of Arts at KPU offers a range of certificate, diploma, degree programs, and courses focused on developing well-rounded, creative, and critical thinkers. The largest faculty at KPU, arts has over 300 faculty members teaching courses in 19 different academic disciplines ranging from music and visual arts to geography and modern languages. An arts education provides students with a wide and diverse range of experiential learning opportunities including co-op education, practicums, service learning, mentorship, and unique community partnerships.

For more information about the faculty and the music department at KPU, visit