New interactive NACmusicbox TIMELINE offers 200 free NAC Orchestra recordings and explores Canada’s contribution to music history

Ottawa (Canada) – The National Arts Centre in partnership with the Virtual Museum of Canada today launched the NACmusicbox TIMELINE, a free online music collection and interactive learning resource for students, teachers and music lovers. 

TIMELINE, offered through the NAC’s wildly popular website, maps 80 Canadian works and 134 international works on an interactive timeline, from the Baroque period to the 21st Century. It features over 200 audio recordings, 200 concert programs, 95 composer biographies and over 300 pages of historic events. Each musical work is highlighted on the timeline within its social, political and cultural context. 

“Our Government is working to provide Canadians across the country with as much access as possible to Canada’s heritage,” said the Honourable James Moore,
Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages. “We are proud that our investment in the NACmusicbox TIMELINE helps to support digital access to Canadian cultural content through the Virtual Museum of Canada.” 

TIMELINE is a graphic tool designed to explore music connections through a variety of themes and filters.  The site also offers a look at Canada’s contribution to orchestral history with two three-part podcast series about Canadian Contemporary Music Making in Canada, Post WW2. Renowned writer-broadcaster and classical music specialist Eric Friesen hosts the English podcast while Jean-Jacques Van Vlasselaer, musicologist and longtime music critic for LeDroit newspaper, hosts the French version. 

The TIMELINE launch comes on the heels of receiving a .CA Impact Award in the eLearning category at the annual Mesh Conference, Canada’s leading online conference, in Toronto. The website was competing against 600 entries from across the country. The .CA awards celebrate people and organizations that use their websites to make a positive difference in the lives of their users and their communities. 

Celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2011-2012, is one of the world’s most popular arts education websites, receiving 4,500 unique visits per school day. Increasingly, teachers are turning to this website for curriculum based resources, 1,150,000 teacher kits have been downloaded from the site by users in Canada and internationally. The kits feature activities and education tools in each of the NAC’s artistic disciplines of music, dance, French theatre and English theatre. helps the NAC pursue its strategic goals of strengthening performing arts education across Canada and developing audiences among Canadian youth. The NAC Musicbox TIMELINE could not have been made without the generous support of the Virtual Museum, an initiative of the Department of Canadian Heritage, and CBC Radio2. 


 For more information, please contact:

Carl Martin
Communications Advisor
National Arts Centre
(613) 947-7000, ext. 560