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Royal Conservatory of Music renames Toronto school after jazz legend Oscar Peterson

Click to play video: 'Honouring a Montreal musical legend'
Honouring a Montreal musical legend
WATCH ABOVE: The opposition at Montreal city hall plans to present a motion to rename Place des Festivals to honour Montreal-born jazz legend Oscar Peterson. As Global's Gloria Henriquez explains, Peterson's widow feels renaming the home of the Montreal Jazz Festival would be a fitting tribute – Oct 7, 2020

TORONTO — The Royal Conservatory of Music is honouring Canadian jazz pianist Oscar Peterson by renaming its community school after the late alumnus.

The organization says the Royal Conservatory School is now known as the Oscar Peterson School of Music.

The RCM says it will also launch the Oscar Peterson Program, a scholarship offering free music instruction to underserved youth, in the fall of 2022.

Peterson, widely regarded as one of the foremost jazz pianists of his generation, started his music training with the RCM certificate program.

The Montreal native went on to win multiple Juno Awards and was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame before dying of kidney failure in 2007 at the age of 82.

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Peterson received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1997.

Peterson’s wife, Kelly Peterson, said Thursday in a statement that the renaming of the Royal Conservatory School “would have humbled Oscar tremendously.”

“It was Oscar’s belief that music education is extremely important for every single person, regardless of whether they intend to pursue a career in music or not, and that his classical music training gave him his technical foundation,” Kelly Peterson said.

This is the second time The Royal Conservatory has named one of its schools after an RCM alumnus. The Royal Conservatory of Music Professional School was renamed The Glenn Gould School in 1997.

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