Good musicians don’t grow on trees. John Paul II knew that, as did his predecessors. Vatican II endorsed the musical formation of the clergy:
9. In this area, therefore, the urgent need to encourage the sound formation of both pastors and the lay faithful also comes to the fore. St Pius X insisted in particular on the musical training of clerics. The Second Vatican Council also recalled in this regard: “Great importance is to be attached to the teaching and practice of music in seminaries, in the novitiate houses of studies of Religious of both sexes, and also in other Catholic institutions and schools”[SC 115]. This instruction has yet to be fully implemented. I therefore consider it appropriate to recall it, so that future pastors may acquire sufficient sensitivity also in this field.
In the task of training, a special role is played by schools of sacred music, which St Pius X urged people to support and encourage[TlS 28] and which the Second Vatican Council recommended be set up wherever possible[SC 115]. A concrete result of the reform of St Pius X was the establishment in Rome in 1911, eight years after the Motu Proprio, of the “Pontificia Scuola Superiore di Musica Sacra” (Pontifical School for Advanced Studies in Sacred Music), which later became the “Pontificio Istituto di Musica Sacra” (Pontifical Institute of Sacred Music). As well as this academic institution, which has now existed for almost a century and has rendered a high-quality service to the Church, the particular Churches have established many other schools that deserve to be supported and reinforced by an ever better knowledge and performance of good liturgical music.
A hundred years ago, or even forty, the setting up of a music school would be assumed to be a resident/bricks-and-mortar thing. I doubt this is possible or truly necessary. Conferences, seminars, and even colloquia serve this role nicely on a few levels for different people. Charles and others: thoughts?