Dr. Mark Hopkins

Dr. Mark Hopkins

Conductor | Professor | SoundPainter
Acadia University


Dr. Mark Hopkins is a Professor in the School of Music at Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. In addition to leading the Wind Ensemble, Dr. Hopkins teaches undergraduate and graduate Conducting Instrumental Music Education courses, SoundPainting, and chamber music courses.

Dr. Hopkins is in demand as a guest conductor and music education consultant. Since 2003 he has collaborated with Dr. Gillian MacKay as Artistic Co-Director of the Denis Wick Canadian Wind Orchestra, which selects players through annual national auditions. He is Artistic Director of the Nova Scotia Youth Wind Ensemble (2008-2011, 2013-present), and is Past-President of the Nova Scotia Band Association. In November 2016 Dr. Hopkins received an Established Artist Award from Arts Nova Scotia for contributions as a conductor and leader of new music projects, including Shattering the Silence, an innovative new music festival (www.shatteringthesilence.ca) His work as a conductor has been recorded on LIVE WIRED (2015) and In Sonorous Falling Tones (2017, nominated for a 2018 East Coast Music Award). In Canada, he has guest-conducted bands and orchestras in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec. Abroad, he has led collegiate and professional performances in the United States, Bermuda, Hong Kong, China, Japan, Italy, Switzerland, and Romania.

A native of Toronto, Dr. Hopkins graduated from the University of Toronto (BMus Ed.), the University of Western Ontario (B. Ed.), the University of Calgary MMus. Conducting), and the New England Conservatory (DMA Wind Conducting). While attending NEC he served as Assistant to Frank L. Battisti, and was awarded the Gunther Schuller Medal at graduation. Prior to his appointment at Acadia University, Dr. Hopkins led ensembles and taught at the University of Calgary and Hanover College in Indiana (1999-2005). Dr. Hopkins taught music in high schools for twelve years, including seven years of service as Chair of the Music Department at Upper Canada College in Toronto. His professional work as a Conductor spans the full range of ensembles and genres.


Dr. Mark Hopkins

B. Mus. University of Toronto

B. Ed. University of Western Ontario

M. Mus. University of Calgary

D.M.A. New England Conservatory

Level 1 SoundPainting Certification

  Session Titles

Borrowed Wisdom: Tips and strategies from the adjudicator's table.


In this workshop, best-practice in band rehearsals are explored, through the lens of excellent adjudicator-clinicians. Some common issues in young bands will be explored and solved using solutions and strategies from some of the best musicians/conductors/teachers in the field.

Shaping Creative Flow: Using sound painting technique to shape improvisation in the music classroom


This clinic aims to suggest ways that SoundPainting, (a method to shape improvisation within ensembles, and organize musicians to solo or accompany in real time) can help organize ensembles of 5-100 musicians to improvise coherent and meaningful compositions. SoundPainting allows a leader (aka, “SoundPainter”) to shape live improvisation, resulting in a cohesive, finished composition.