Posted on May 25, 2023

Music scholarship recipient's VCC experience

Johneil Viñas was the award recipient of the "Music Program Third Year Scholarship" in Fall 2022, and is graduating from VCC's Bachelor's Degree in Applied Music at VCC this Summer with a major in Drumset Contemporary and Jazz Performance. In a Q&A format, Johneil shared his experiences studying, working, and performing music in Vancouver.

Q: Why did you choose to study at VCC?

The music program at Vancouver Community College is one of the best in the province, providing strong support and practical experience to its students. VCC's music program has all state-of-the-art tools that ensure students’ success once they are done with their studies.


Q. What were some memorable experiences during your studies?

I have been able to experience playing with the New Orleans Ensemble, studying Jazz, conducting and singing with a choir, composing original music for singers and songwriters, learning the history of music, meeting and studying with classical students, and being involved in music productions, among others. I recently joined VCC’s Performance Week and played with the New Orleans Ensemble directed by Mr. James Danderfer, one of the best Jazz Clarinet Players in Vancouver. Here are short video recordings of my performance: Nightlife by James Danderfer and Jean de Fleur by Grant Green.

[With the New Orleans Ensemble - photo courtesy of Johneil Viñas]


Q. Tell us about your work experience in Vancouver.

I'm currently working as a part-time drums instructor at the School of Rock Vancouver. In this workplace, I have been able to meet the coolest bosses and nicest, most talented colleagues. I’m glad to be able to apply my musical knowledge and skills acquired from the program as well as nurture my passion for music.

[With the teachers at School of Rock Vancouver - photo courtesy of Johneil Viñas]


Q. What would you like to say to aspiring music students who might be considering VCC?

The student community at VCC is very encouraging and supportive. Everyone lifts up and helps each other, especially during back-to-back performances and whenever a student struggles in certain areas of the program. I highly recommend VCC's music program to all aspiring music students out there.

[With the Conducting class at VCC - photo courtesy of Johneil Viñas]

Start your music career in Vancouver by completing the Music Diploma (2 years) and continue with Bachelor of Applied Music (2 years) to pursue your bachelor's degree. Sign up for a Music Info Session to learn more, or apply now if you're ready!