Uniarts Helsinki’s Sibelius Academy is the only university-level music institution in Finland. The academy trains artists, teachers and other music professionals who are skilled in independent and diverse artistic work.
Happening now at Sibelius Academy
Sibelius Academy, the cornerstone of Finnish music, has long traditions. Established in 1882, the cradle of classical music education has added other genres to its palette: Jazz and Folk Music have been taught since the early 1980s and Music Technology since the early 1990s. The driving force for everyone at the Academy is the unquestionable love they have for music, and for the work that they do.
Today Sibelius Academy is a creative community of 1,500 students and more than 1,000 staff. It is one of the biggest music academies in Europe and internationally renowned and recognised.
The mission of the Sibelius Academy is to foster and renew musical culture. The mission is accomplished through three modes of activity: teaching, research, and art.
In addition to the Bachelor’s and Master’s of Music degrees, you can complete a Licentiate degree and a Doctoral degree at the Academy. The Academy also has a youth department (Junior Academy) and a department for adult education and training.
Public concerts are a display of art at the Academy. The 600 annual events form the majority of concerts in the Helsinki Metropolitan Region.
In addition to Helsinki, Sibelius Academy has departments in Kuopio and Seinäjoki. The Sibelius Academy Library, a specialist music library, is located in the Helsinki Music Centre and welcomes all visitors.
At the Sibelius Academy, you will evolve into a musician with a distinct creative identity. You will become more proficient on your instrument, enhance your artistic and theoretical skills and knowledge, and learn to apply them as a professional musician.
You will be able to tailor your studies to a considerable extent. You can become a specialist on a specific field or an all-round expert. At the beginning of your studies, you will write an individual study plan, which is a tool to help you plan and focus your studies. The compulsory requirements for a degree at the Sibelius Academy are defined by the degree curriculum, but all students can choose from various options according to their interests and based on their existing skill levels.
In several major subjects, individual instruction is the core of the programme. Practical training outside the Academy is included in some programmes.
Degrees and programmes
At Sibelius Academy, you can complete the following degrees: Bachelor of Music, Master of Music, Licentiate of Music, and Doctor of Music.
We offer nine degree programmes, each with several main subjects, and four master’s programmes.
The school works in two faculties: The Faculty of Classical Music and the Faculty of Music Education, Jazz, and Folk Music. The faculties consist of 13 departments, which provide teaching in the various main subjects.
Degree programmes (5.5-year BA+MA degree programmes and 2.5-year MA degree programmes)
At the Sibelius Academy, doctoral students work towards creative and analytical expertise in art, research, development, and education. In addition to expertise in their fields, doctoral graduates from Sibelius Academy are committed to work for an ethically sustainable future. Doctoral study at Sibelius Academy is based on interaction between art, research, and pedagogy, and it can be undertaken in one of the three specialisations. Students can, according to their background and interests, choose between the Arts, Research, and Applied Study Programmes.
Open University and continuing education
Taideyliopiston avoin yliopisto tarjoaa myös Sibelius-Akatemian tutkintovaatimusten mukaista, korkealaatuista ja tutkimukseen perustuvaa yliopisto-opetusta, joka on avointa kaikille. Taideyliopiston täydennyskoulutus tarjoaa kehittymisen mahdollisuuksia taidealojen ammattilaisille ja organisaatioille.
Research is an essential part of the creative work carried out at Sibelius Academy. As a result of the versatile expertise of the faculty, different theoretical approaches, methodologies, and research methods are in constant coexistence and interaction. Interaction between research and music is lively. Research at Sibelius Academy focuses on the following areas:
- Making, teaching, and learning of music
- History of musical practices and structures of music
- Relationship between music and the mind, musical interaction, and
- Philosophy and aesthetics of music.
News about research and doctoral education
Art and artistic work are at the core of education at Sibelius Academy. Through art and artistic work students at Sibelius Academy become and mature as artists. The educational role of artistic activity is to offer the students a wide range of learning contexts and opportunities to gain experience in the following: the artistic and practical planning of and preparation for public performances; performing for and interacting with different kinds of audiences; and different types of performing arenas and forms of performance.
Artistic activity also benefits teacher development in artistry and professionalism and supports music research.
Art at Sibelius Academy is versatile and surprising. It is a whole that consists of the activities of the departments, teachers, and students. The activities are showcased in 600 annual concerts that are open to the public. Most of the concerts are staged at the Helsinki Music Centre.
There are two concert seasons at Sibelius Academy: the autumn and spring seasons. In the summer months, concerts are offered in the Young Summer Artists series.
Sibelius Academy also hosts festivals and competitions. The flagship of Sibelius Academy is the Symphony Orchestra, of which the whole school is proud.
Sibafest and DIG. Festivals
Sibafest and DIG. Festivals
Sibafest is the biennial pinnacle of artistic activity at Sibelius Academy. This one-week festival showcases the entire spectrum of artistic activity at Sibelius Academy.
The festival is hosted by the Helsinki Music Centre. Led by a festival-specific artistic director, each festival presents 400–500 acts, and the turnout at each festival is approximately 7000–8000. More information on Sibafest is available on the festival website.
The DIG. Festival is organised annually at the Helsinki Music Centre and its Black Box Hall and the Music Centre Club by the Sibelius Academy Jazz Department.
In the past, the festival has been visited by some of the most eminent jazz musicians, including the Wayne Shorter Quartet, the Lionel Loueke trio, Pat Martino, Chris Potter, Carmen Lundy, and Jason Moran.
Sibelius Academy organises the International Maj Lind Piano Competition every five years and the International Harald Andersén Chamber Choir Competition every three years. In collaboration with the Sibelius Society of Finland, Sibelius Academy organises the International Jean Sibelius Violin Competition.
The Helmi Vesa Piano Competition is open for Sibelius Academy students.
Sibelius Academy’s own record label, SibaRecords, releases records made by students and teachers alike. SibaRecords produces high-quality recordings, assists musicians in expanding their artistic activities, and disseminates music recordings produced at Sibelius Academy.
SibaRecords was established in 2009. The first releases were launched officially in 2010. Since then, the catalogue has expanded at an even pace.
SibaRecords releases include both multi-channel Super Audio CD recordings and traditional CDs. All recordings have also been released in digital format.
Young Summer Artists
Young Summer Artists
The Young Summer Artists (Kesän nuoret taiteilijat) series presents recent or soon-to-be graduates from Sibelius Academy. The series reflects the personal profiles, expression, and artistic visions of these successful students.
The series was established in August 2012. Every year, five to six young talents are invited to give a concert in this showcase series.
Partners and networks
Sibelius Academy performs the 3rd mission of universities, which is influencing society from various standpoints. In addition to the numerous concerts, we also create connections to the society around us, such as by corporate and alumni cooperation. The Sibelius Academy advisory board and Vivat Academia, an association of friends of Sibelius Academy, are another form of interaction.
Sibelius Academy is also a societal commentator trying to secure the position and quality of art education. Ever-tightening cooperation with other universities in Finland and abroad guarantees varied educational opportunities and solidifies Sibelius Academy’s position as a top international university.
Kolmisointu (‘Triad’) initiative
Kolmisointu (‘Triad’) initiative
The Kolmisointu initiative gathers Sibelius Academy, the City of Järvenpää, and the Leonora and Yrjö Paloheimo Foundation to provide concerts and education in Järvenpää.
The Friends of Sibelius Academy
The Friends of Sibelius Academy
The Friends of Sibelius Academy is a new American foundation dedicated to providing access in the United States to Sibelius Academy of Finland’s internationally renowned music education initiatives, world-class artistic offerings, and exciting cultural programmes of the highest creative and pedagogic quality.
The careers of Finland’s famous international music stars – past, present and future – all begin at the Sibelius Academy, where great musicians are born.
Read more here.
Vivat Academia ry The Vivat Academia association gathers the friends of Sibelius Academy to follow teaching and research in the Academy, to become acquainted with the backgrounds of artistic activities, and to be present at performances by both the students and star performers and to converse with them.
Vivat Academia was established in early 1996. The association maintains interaction between Sibelius Academy and the outside world. The association gathers people and organisations interested in Sibelius Academy, including former and current instructors, students, and personnel.
The dean and two vice deans head the Sibelius Academy, and the faculty deans head the two Sibelius Academy faculties.
The Academic Council is the highest Sibelius Academy authority on education, pedagogy, artistic activity, and research.
Dean Kaarlo Hildén
Kaarlo Hildén acts as the dean of the Sibelius Academy from 1 March 2017 to 31 July 2021. He has been the dean of the Faculty of Classical Music at the Sibelius Academy since 2010. From 2007 to 2010, Hildén was the Programme Director of Hanasaari Swedish–Finnish Cultural Centre. Prior to that, he worked for seven years as the music education director of Helsinki Polytechnic Stadia. He has taught the piano, practical accompaniment, and music theory at Sibelius Academy and Helsinki Conservatory of Music. Hildén has a Master of Music degree.
Contact: Kaarlo Hildén, via the executive assistant: kristina.lillqvist(at)uniarts.fi, tel. +358 294 47 2000 (switchboard)
First Vice Dean Olli-Pekka Martikainen
Olli-Pekka Martikainen acts as first vice dean from 15 March 2013 until 31 December 2017. The vice dean’s duties mainly involve basic degree studies and artistic operations. Olli-Pekka Martikainen has been a lecturer in percussion instruments in the Academy since 2004, before which he worked as a part-time teacher. He has been the head of the department since 2011. Martikainen worked in the Lahti Symphony Orchestra as the leader of the percussion instrument section for over 15 years. Olli-Pekka Martikainen has a Doctor of Music degree.
Contact: olli-pekka.martikainen(at)uniarts.fi, tel. +358 40 710 4281 or via the executive assistant: kristina.lillqvist(at)uniarts.fi, tel. +358 294 47 2000 (switchboard)
Second Vice Dean Tuire Kuusi
Tuire Kuusi (DMus) acts as a second vice dean at the Sibelius Academy, and she is responsible for research and doctoral studies. She is also a university lecturer at the DocMus Doctoral School. As the supervisor-in-charge, Kuusi’s duties include the supervision of doctoral students’ dissertations and written works. She is also the supervisor of theses and written works at the Department of Composition and Music Theory.
Tuire Kuusi is a member in various administrative bodies and working groups at the DocMus Doctoral School, the Sibelius Academy, and the University of the Arts Helsinki.
Contact: Tuire Kuusi, tuire.kuusi(at)uniarts.fi, tel. +358 40 710 4337, or via the executive assistant: kristina.lillqvist(at)uniarts.fi, tel. +358 294 47 2000 (switchboard)
Faculty deans manage and develop the operations of their faculties and are responsible for their results.
Faculty Dean Elina Laakso
Elina Laakso acts as dean for the Faculty of Music Education, Jazz and Folk Music from 1 August 2013 to 31 July 2018. Laakso was the head of the Academy’s Kuopio Unit from 1999 to 2004, and again beginning in 2008. She has worked for the Kuopio Unit as a part-time teacher since 1997 and as lecturer of church music since 1999. Laakso has held several positions of trust in the International Society for Music Education for ten years. Laakso has completed both Cantor-Organist and Music Teacher qualifications at the Academy.
Contact: Elina Laakso, elina.laakso(at)uniarts.fi, tel. +358 40 710 4385 or via the executive assistant: kristina.lillqvist(at)uniarts.fi, tel. +358 294 47 2000 (switchboard)
Faculty Dean NN
Faculty of Classical Music