Final curtain for Villa Maria’s 165-year-old music program

Students perform at Villa Maria's final music program concert. Thursday June 7, 2018. Global news/Francois Joly

It is the end of an era at Villa Maria High School in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce.

After 165 years, the private Catholic school’s music program is shutting down.

Villa Maria’s choir and vocal ensemble performed a final concert Thursday at the school.

“It’s a night for joy and congratulations because the students worked very hard, but on the other hand it is the last concert ever,” said the president of the Villa Maria PTA Nathalie Fisette-Caza.

Parents and students of the private school were shocked when management announced in January that it was firing 18 music teachers and ending its long-standing music program.

READ MORE: Villa Maria High School to drop private music school

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Six months later, the disappointment is still fresh.

“After 165 years of giving concerts and having music behind its walls, they are forgetting their identity and throwing it all away,” Fisette-Caza said.

Parents say they had no indication that the music program was about to be cut.

READ MORE: Villa Maria students protest closure of Montreal school’s private music program

Since the announcement they offered several solutions, including to pay more for students to attend.

A petition has been set up online to try and get the school’s management to change its mind.

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