National Music Centre launches NMC Collections Online

March 15, 2017

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The National Music Centre (NMC) has launched a new online platform, connecting music lovers from around the world to NMC’s extensive and rare collection of musical instruments and memorabilia at the click of a mouse.

This new digital platform will kick off with 150 of NMC’s top collection items viewable online in celebration of Canada 150.

NMC stewards one of the most impressive music collections in the world, including over 2,000 historic musical instruments, artifacts, and Canadian music memorabilia, which collectively spans over 450 years of music history, technology and innovation.


Neil Peart custom “Hockey Night in Canada” drum kit, 2009. On loan from Rush. Photo credit: Don Kennedy. 

NMC Collections Online will be an important and accessible resource for a wide audience, that includes the general public, students interested in music and music history, industry, artists and producers from around the world, aspiring participants in NMC’s Artist in Residence program, and various scholarly and cultural institutions.

NMC believes that this resource will open up future collaborations, more national and international interest in its unique collection, and raise awareness of the need to preserve musical artifacts and our Canadian musical heritage.


McLeyvier Amadeus synthesizer, 1981. Photo credit: Don Kennedy.

“The National Music Centre has long been a quiet leader in artifact accessibility, and by committing to placing this wealth of valuable research and content online, we are fulfilling an element of our national mandate to be widely seen as an national and international resource for musicians, writers, scholars, collectors and museums,” said Jesse Moffatt, NMC’s Director of Collections. “We have worked on this project since 2014 and we are eager to grow its depth and breadth and share it with the world.”


Roger Luther custom Moog modular synthesizer, 1973. Photo credit: Don Kennedy.

NMC Collections Online is accessible by visiting collections.nmc.ca via any web-enabled device. Music fans and gearheads can browse the database or register for a free account to customize their experience, save their favourite collection items, and share them on social media.

Detailed Photos of each collection item will be accompanied by information on its year of production, country of origin, pertinent cultural, technical and historical information and, where applicable, the famous music-makers that have been associated with each artifact.

Currently, 150 collection items are available to view online. The public will be able to view over 300 items by the end of 2017.

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