Prof. Wanyama Mellitus Nyongesa (PhD, HSC)

Founding Dean, School of Music and Performing Arts

Professor Mellitus Nyongesa Wanyama, is a holder of PhD in Ethnomusicology from University of Pretoria, South Africa. He is a Professor of Musicology and Ethnomusicology. He also holds BA and Master of Philosophy in Creative Arts and Linguistics from Moi University, Diploma in Music Education from Kisii College (Now Kisii University) and Certificate in Education (P1) from Mosoriot Teacher’s College.

On 12th December 2013, he was awarded Head of State Commendation (HSC) award, by H.E. The Fourth President of Kenya, Hon. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, at State House Nairobi, for exemplary service in Education, Research Culture and Musical Arts Education in Kenya, Africa and beyond.

Until his appointment as the Founding Dean, School of Music and Performing Arts at Kabarak University, he was the Head and founder of Music Studies at Moi University, Eldoret. He was also the Music Director at the same University.

He is a music educator, composer, arranger, choral trainer, dance choreographer and adjudicator of music and dance. For 26 years, he has taught music and dance at primary, secondary school and University levels. So far, he has published 36 articles in peer-reviewed and refereed journals and book chapters. He has also authored 3 research-based books in his area of specialization. Currently, he is authoring 5 books in which he is documenting his 80 music compositions and arrangements which he has composed since 1989.

In February 2014, he was appointed by His Excellency President Moi, Chancellor Kabarak University to chair the panel of music education experts to develop Kabarak University School of Music and performing arts curriculum.

Kabarak University School of Music and Performing Arts (SMPA) was officially launched in August 2015 in a ceremony that was presided over by the Chancellor of the University,  His Excellency President Daniel Arap Moi the second president of the Republic of Kenya. The construction of the School Complex was then commissioned and its completion and official opening coincided with the celebrations of HE President Daniel Arap Moi’s 92nd Birthday celebrations. The celebrations took place in September 2016.  Mzee1 haboured the SMPA concept for over 30 years and therefore it is worth noting that the SMPA dream-come-true was Mzee’s personal initiative – an initiative that emanated from his passion and sheer love for music. It thus suffices to say that the SMPA dream-come-true was a befitting gift to advancement of church music education and musical arts education in general. The Church in Kenya, the Kenyan child and the general public can now pride in state-of-the-art music facility that is poised to offer world class music education and training.

The SMPA curriculum is market-driven and projects the School as unparalleled centre for music training excellence and instruction in the Eastern Africa region and beyond. The School now offers quality music programmes that range from certificate all through to doctoral studies. These programmes aim at equipping learners with relevant skills and expertise in the areas of church music education; musical arts education; music theory, composition and performance;  music production technology; musicology, African music and ethnomusicology; all from a biblical perspective.

Situated in the cool great Rift Valley region, in a serene environment located 15 minutes away from Nakuru town, SMPA complex houses lecturers’ and administrators’ offices, classrooms, ultra-modern and state-of-the-art recording studio, amphitheater for live performances, a library and music laboratory. Besides the unmatched facility in the region, the School endeavours to establish linkages and working partnerships with other music institutions from within and outside the country. Currently, in partnership with Prof. Kimberly Carballo from Jacobs School of music, Indiana University, the school is the only one in the region that offers online classes in music performance practicals. In recent years, the School hosted Choral Ensemble from Malone University in Ohio US besides hosting a world-renowned organist Michael Koenig for a week-long music performances and workshops. The School is an examination centre for the Associated Board of Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) besides housing the official contact address for American Guild of Organists, Nairobi Chapter. Over and above the aforementioned networks, the School’s founding Dean (Prof. Mellitus Wanyama) is the current President elect of the Pan African Society of Musical Arts Education (PASMAE) while his Assistant Dean is the current Acting Dean of the American Guild of Organists-Nairobi Chapter. In Kenya, the School works in close partnership with Kenya Music Festival Foundation (KMF), Ministry of Education, Ministry of Culture and Youth Affairs, Permanent Presidential Music Commission, Administration Police Service Band and Tunaweza-Kimuziki (a US-Kenya Cultural Exchange programe –Kenya Chapter).

There is no doubt that the imposing SMPA Complex, unmatched learning resources, and enriching working partnerships and networks, the school is set to encourage, promote and enhance quality music education and research at undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate levels. The School leverages on these unsung attributes to churn out music products and skilled professionals that will effectively respond to societal and market needs while keeping the message of Jesus Christ central to the composition and training of musicians in the university.

School of Music and Performing Arts offers the following courses

1. PhD in Music (offered through course work and thesis)
2. Master of Music Composition
3. Master of Music Education
4. Master of Church Music
5. Master of Musicology
6. Bachelor of Music in Church Music
7. Bachelor of Music Production Technology
8. Bachelor of Music Theory, Composition and Performance
9. Bachelor of Arts in Church Music and Theology
10. Diploma in Music
11. Diploma in Theatre Studies
12. Certificate in Music
13. Short Courses in Music Associated Board of Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) Theory and Practicals Grade I— VIII

The following are the minimum admission requirements

1. PhD in Music (offered through course work and thesis)
Qualifications:
Master of Music in any of the following areas: Music Education, Church Music,
Music Composition, Production Technology, Musicology, and Ethnomusicolog

2. Master of Music Composition
Qualifications:
Bachelor of Music Second Class (upper); OR Second Class Lower with 2 years of relevant research, professional or teaching experience; OR Bachelor of Education (Arts) Second Class (upper) with Music as a teaching subject and a minimum of Grade C in composition courses; OR Bachelor of Arts (Music minor) Second Class (upper) and a minimum of grade C in composition Courses, with evidence of a minimum of 2 years relevant experience and a portfolio of compositions

3. Master of Music Education
Qualifications:
Bachelor of Music second class (upper); OR (lower) with at least 2 years proven relevant research, professional or teaching experience; OR Bachelor of Education (Arts) second class (upper division) with Music as a teaching subject and a minimum of Grade C in musicology, performance or composition courses; OR Bachelor’s degree in any field with postgraduate diploma in music or licentiate of the Royal School of Music and 2 years experience in the education sector or research

4. Master of Church Music
Qualifications:
Bachelor of Music second class (upper); OR (lower) with at least 2 years proven relevant research, professional or teaching experience; OR Bachelor of Education  (Arts) second class (upper division) with Music as a teaching subject and a minimum of Grade C in musicology, performance or composition courses

5. Master of Musicology
Qualifications:
Bachelor of Music Second Class (upper); OR (lower division) with 2 years relevant work experience; OR Bachelor of Education (Arts) Second (upper) with Music as a teaching subject and a minimum of Grade C in musicology courses; OR Bachelor of Arts degrees in Music (Performance and composition) second class (upper) and a minimum of Grade C in musicology courses

6. Bachelor of Music in Church Music
Qualifications:
KCSE C+ (plus) with C+ in Music and C (Plain) in CRE; OR Diploma in Music from a recognized institution.

7. Bachelor of Music Production Technology
Qualifications:
KCSE C+ (plus) with C+ in Music; OR Diploma in Music OR ABRSM Grade VI Theory; OR ABRSM Grade V Practicals; OR 5 years of a full time job as studio/engineer/manager/producer

8. Bachelor of Music Theory, Composition and Performance
Qualifications:
KCSE C+ (plus) with C+ in Music; OR Diploma in Music OR ABRSM Grade VI Theory; OR ABRSM Grade V Practicals; OR 5 years of a full time job as studio/engineer/manager/produce

9. Bachelor of Arts in Church Music and Theology
Qualifications:
KCSE C+ (plus) with C+ in Music and C+ in CRE; OR evidence of engagement in Church related activities; OR Diploma in Music; OR ABRSM Grade VI Theory; OR ABRSM Grade V Practicals

10. Diploma in Music
Qualifications:
KCSE C (plain) in Music; OR ABRSM Music Theory Grade IV; OR ABRSM Music Theory Grade III; OR Certificate in Music

11. Diploma in Theatre Studies
Qualifications:
KCSE C(Plain) with Grade C in English or Kiswahil

12. Certificate in Music
Qualifications:
KCSE D+ with evidence of Music activities such as choral training and participation; band/ensemble participation and/or directing; instrumental performance

13. Short Courses in Music Associated Board of Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) Theory and Practicals Grade I— VIII
Qualifications:
Interest, Relevance and Experience

1. Prof. Wanyama Mellitus Nyongesa – Dean

2. Dr. Wilson Ol’leka Shitandi – Associate Dean

3. Dr. Patrick Ernst Monte – HOD

4. Ms. Joyce M. Mochere – Lecturer

5. Mr. Amon Kirui – Lecturer

6. Mozart Onyango Barnabas – Graduate Assistant

GALLERY