In music, institution for education in musical performance and composition. The term and institution derives from the Italian conservatorio, which in the Renaissance period and earlier denoted an orphanage often attached to a hospital. The children there were given musical training; the term gradually came to apply to music schools. The first secular school of music for students at large was established in Paris in 1784. Throughout the 19th century the French model was copied, with modifications, in Europe and in the U.S., later in Canada and Australia. Conservatories typically offer instruction to people of all ages, but the primary focus is on students age 10–25. Important U.S. conservatories include the Curtis Institute of Music, the Eastman School, and the Juilliard School.
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Notable conservatories include: