History and founders

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The 20th century saw the birth and development of numerous works on child education and psychology and in particular on music education. Among the pioneers were Maria Montessori, Rudolf Steiner and Emile Jaques-Dalcroze.

Some of them included music in the same way as other disciplines in general education, while others were interested in specific aspects of music education.

Edgar Willems deliberately placed himself in the middle of these two trends, starting from philosophical ideas and anchoring music education in the deepest nature of the human being through a pedagogical progression of continuous coherence from the first introductory music course to advanced solfeggio and instrumental practice.


Founded in 1968 by Jacques Chapuis, the “International Association of Teachers of Musical Education Edgar Willems Method” has evolved over the years to become the “International Willems Federation®.

Its aim is to promote the development and international influence of the work of Professor Edgar Willems in the service of music education, by:

  • The implementation of information, awareness-raising and training activities
  • To bring together those involved in music education of all nationalities and ages, whose activities are in line with Edgar Willems’ pedagogical proposal, by promoting their improvement and exchange of experience, their practical and pedagogical development and their intercultural friendship.
  • Artistic, pedagogical and administrative support for the projects submitted to it.
  • The valorisation and respect of the registered “Willems®” label on the basis of the specifications annexed to the present statutes. As such, the International Willems® Federation is the only body authorised to award the diplomas corresponding to the various training courses organised by it or on its behalf.

The Federation abstains from all political and religious activities.

Its members are spread over some thirty countries.

Biographies