The Contemporary Music Ensemble expands students' musical abilities to include extended techniques and new digital technologies such as live electronics.

CME conductor Guillaume Bourgogne brings an international expertise to our school's  new music area and leads several organizations overseas.

The CME performs some of the most exciting music of our times.

Contemporary Music Ensemble

Director: Guillaume Bourgogne

Ensemble Contact: [at] (Christa Emerson)

Participation: Entrance is by audition (see audition schedules).  This ensemble is open to music students, and McGill University students from other faculties. If you are a member of this ensemble, find your schedule on the ensemble hub website.


The Contemporary Music Ensemble (CME) is a high level chamber orchestra entirely dedicated to 20th and 21st century repertoire. Founded in 1996 by the composer and conductor Denys Bouliane, the CME has been under the direction of conductor Guillaume Bourgogne since 2013.


Performing four programs per season featuring Canadian and international new music, the CME's objective is to widen knowledge of new music and to teach the newest playing techniques used by contemporary composers. Concerts usually take place in Pollack Hall or the Multimedia Room of the Schulich School of Music.  CME programs feature masterpieces of the past century as well as recent works of the world's most prominent composers. The ensemble premieres the works of four resident composers per year and collaborates with important Canadian and foreign composers, including Schulich School of Music students and faculty.


The CME is involved with many research projects and symposia in the fields of technology, composition and musicology. During the 2014-15 season, it performed within the Grisey Symposium (in collaboration with CIRMMT), the Concrescence Project colloquium (with Norwegian composer Lasse Thoresen) and the Montreal New Music festival entitled "Surroundings and New Technologies" (with Italian composer Mauro Lanza). During the 2015-16 season, the CME will participate in a conference featuring John Rea’s music ("Hommage" SMCQ series) as well as in a research project exploring the link between composition and improvisation, with a performance of Luciano Berio’s Laborintus II.