Admissions Guide: Master's programme in Classical Music Performance (Voice)

2.5-year education

 

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Fill in the application here: [link to the application in Studyinfo service]

Entrance examination date: 

  • Opera coaching 15.-16.5.2019
  • Vocal Arts (2.5-year): week 19

For more information about the programme, see: Classical Music Performance / Voice, Opera Coaching

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Admissions requirements 2019

 

Please read also the general admissions requirements before applying!

 

In the department of Vocal Music, the main subject options for the 2.5-year programme are Vocal Arts, Opera, or Opera Coaching. You can apply for one or more main subjects in the 2.5-year programme in Classical Music Performance. Admissions requirements for the English-language Opera programme can be found here.

The languages of tuition in the programme are Finnish, Swedish, and English. All applicants to the Classical Music Performance programme must demonstrate their language proficiency in Finnish, Swedish, or English. In multilanguage degree programmes, students can choose their language of tuition from the available options (Finnish/Swedish/English). However, the majority of group tuition at the Sibelius Academy is provided in Finnish or English.

Vocal Arts

Student selection for the Vocal Arts programme is based on the results of an entrance examination. Your general eligibility for university studies and your suitability for education and a career in music will be taken into account. The Entrance Examination Board will assess your main instrument together with your skills and knowledge as well as your suitability for education and a career in music. For the assessment of your educability, your vocal material and suitability for performing arts are emphasized.

All the parts of the audition in the main instrument will assess your skills presented at the audition, educability and suitability for a career in music. The examination in the main instrument will include an interview. The interview will assess your educability and suitability for a career in music, your motivation and proficiency in languages. You must have a sufficient command of Finnish, Swedish, or English.

All sections of the entrance examination may include several parts. All parts are compulsory. You will be rejected if you fail to perform any single part of the examination.

The arias and lieder should be sung in the original language and from memory. The arias should be sung in the original key. During the audition, the Baroque arias must be sung in the original written or sounding key, and with piano accompaniment.

A choice indicating versatility is recommended. Same pieces cannot be performed in different stages of the entrance examination. The pieces must be with accompaniment. All applicants must use the pianist provided by Sibelius Academy. 

Pre-examination assignments

In addition to filling in the electronic application form, you must submit the following pre-examination assignments to the Sibelius Academy Admissions Office via the Embark system, so that they arrive no later than 30 January 2019 at 3 pm (Finnish time):

  • CV, answering only to following questions (N.B.! Maximum length one A4-page!):
    • Your name
    • A list of previous music training (subject, teacher, when the subject(s) was/were studied, school)
    • A list of level examinations (subject, level, date attained, grade, and school)
    • A list of previous courses and qualifications in music theory or other relevant subjects (subjects, grade, teacher, school)
    • A description of any other musical activities or practices in which you have been involved (e.g. teaching, participation in orchestras, choirs, operatic societies etc.)
    • A list of previous language studies and language skills
       
  • Motivation essay: “Why do I apply for Vocal Arts programme” (N.B.! Maximum length one A4-page!)
    N.B.! If you are applying for more than one main subject in Classical Music Performance, voice as a main subject (Vocal Arts, Opera, Opera Coaching), please note that you must write a separate motivation essay for each main subject.
     
  • An entrance examination video recording, in which you must sing a classical solo work with piano accompaniment, and an opera or oratorio / cantata aria (of your choice). All the pieces should be sung in the original language and the arias in the original key. The recording must be equivalent to a normal audition or a concert setting, in which you perform facing the camera with your entire body visible in full length. Editing of the video is not allowed, so each piece must be recorded in one take. The material must be accompanied by information on the pieces performed and the date of the recording. No recordings older than six months will be accepted.

Further instructions for use of the Embark system will be published in November 2018 on Uniarts Helsinki admissions website. If you fail to deliver the listed documents to the Sibelius Academy by the deadline, you will not be invited to the entrance examinations. N.B.! Pre-examination assignments cannot be submitted via e-mail or with the application form in the Studyinfo portal!

Entrance examination

The decision on the applicants to be invited to the actual entrance examination will be made based on the video recordings, CVs, and motivation essays submitted before the entrance examination.

Submittal of  sheet music

You must submit a list of your audition repertoire and related sheet music to the Sibelius Academy no later than 29 March 2019. The music must be in the intended key (all the pieces should be sung in the original language and the arias in the original key). The sheet music must be of high quality, and the sheets must be taped together or in a folder. Your name and programme, all possible leaps, cadenzas, or other deviations from the original notation must be clearly marked on the sheets. The sheet music must include a mention of the composer (if not otherwise apparent). The contents or sequence of the audition programme cannot be changed after the submittal deadline.

Postal address: Sibelius Academy, Vocal music admissions, P.O. Box 35, FI-00097 UNIARTS
Visiting address / address for the courier mail: Nervanderinkatu 13, 00100 Helsinki, FINLAND

Audition in the main instrument

The entrance examinations will be carried out in Helsinki, and all applicants invited to the examination must be present for the examination in person.

Programme:

  • One aria, one aria from a religious Baroque work, and one lied in German, of which the Entrance Examination Board will select the pieces to be performed in second round
  • Ensemble singing (link to the assignment is attached to the invitation, the nature of the audition will be a rehearsal-type performance)
  • Interview
  • Test on improvisational skills on stage
  • A free-choice monologue or other text prepared in advance, presented from memory and in your mother tongue (duration max. 3 minutes)

Assessment

Vocal audition and evaluation of educability in the 2.5-year programme is 100 %.

The Entrance Examination Board will give you points on the basis of their assessment of you as a whole. In other words, points given for the pre-examination assignments will also be taken into consideration. The points obtained by you from the actual entrance examination are final.

Opera Coaching

Applicants are selected on the basis of the entrance examination. Your general eligibility for university studies and your suitability for education and a career in music will be taken into account. The entrance examination includes the assessment of your skills, knowledge, proficiency, and educability by the Entrance Examination Board. For the assessment of your educability, your social skills are emphasized in addition to your artistic and technical proficiency.

All parts of the main subject examination assess your demonstrated skills, educability and suitability for the profession. In addition to testing your proficiency in their main instrument, the examination includes tasks related to ensemble playing, rehearsing skills, oral skills, and voice production.

The entrance examination includes an interview. The interview assesses your educability and suitability for the profession, your motivation to study, language proficiency and verbal skills. You are required to have a sufficient command of Finnish, Swedish, or English. You are requested to state any previous language studies in your CV.

All parts of the entrance examination may have several parts. All parts of the examination are compulsory. You will be rejected if you fail to perform any single part of the examination. 

Pre-examination assignments

In addition to filling in the electronic application form, you must submit the following pre-examination assignments to the Sibelius Academy Admissions Office via the Embark system, so that they arrive no later than 30 January 2019 at 3 pm (Finnish time):

  • CV, answering only to following questions (N.B.! Maximum length one A4-page!):
    • Your name
    • A list of previous music training (subject, teacher, when the subject(s) was/were studied, school)
    • A list of level examinations (subject, level, date attained, grade, and school)
    • A list of previous courses and qualifications in music theory or other relevant subjects (subjects, grade, teacher, school)
    • A description of any other musical activities or practices in which you have been involved (e.g. teaching, participation in orchestras, choirs, operatic societies etc.)
    • A list of previous language studies and language skills
       
  • Motivation essay: “Why do I apply for Opera Coaching programme” (N.B.! Maximum length one A4-page!)
    N.B.! If you are applying for more than one main subject in Classical Music Performance, voice as a main subject (Vocal Arts, Opera, Opera Coaching), please note that you must write a separate motivation essay for each main subject.

Further instructions for use of the Embark system will be published in November 2018 on Uniarts Helsinki admissions website. If you fail to deliver the listed documents to the Sibelius Academy by the deadline, you will not be invited to the entrance examinations. N.B.! Pre-examination assignments cannot be submitted via e-mail or with the application form in the Studyinfo portal!

Entrance examination

The entrance examination is in two parts.

Part I

Programme: to be prepared:

  • Solo performance of a piano work or part of a work of your own choice, duration max. 7 minutes
  • Lied assignment, prepared with a vocalist appointed by Sibelius Academy. Details of this performance will be specified in conjunction with the invitation to the entrance examination. It is possible to practice with a singer for 15 minutes prior to the audition.
  • Aria assignment with a vocalist appointed by Sibelius Academy without preparation. The examination aria/arias are specified in conjunction with the invitation to the entrance examination.

At its discretion, the Board may listen to only part of the performance demonstration.

A part of the applicants are invited to complete Part II of the entrance examination on the basis of the scores in Part I. The scores in Part I and the names of applicants who are invited to the second part are published in the manner specified on the invitation to the entrance examination.

Part II

Programme to be prepared:

  • Solo performance of a piano work or part of a work of your own choice, duration max. 7 minutes. The work must be by a different composer than the work chosen for Part I.
  • Ensemble assignment from an opera by Mozart. A practice session with a singer from the ensemble. You are required to independently coach a singer for a role in the number in question (music, style, lyrics, phonetics, stage context, etc.) Duration approximately 20 minutes. The assignment will be announced in the invitation to the entrance examination.
  • Sight-reading (prima vista) assignment
  • Collaboration test with a conductor; details will be specified in the invitation to the entrance examination
  • Phonetic test (reading from a text in two of the following languages: German/French/Italian)
  • Interview  

At its discretion, the Entrance Examination Board may listen to only part of the performance demonstration.

Assessment

All parts of the entrance examination are scored on a scale of 0-25 points. The main subject examination and the educability assessment amount to 100 %.

In Part I, the Entrance Examination Board scores your entrance examination so that the score reflects the overall assessment of you.

In Part II, the Entrance Examination Board scores the entrance examination performances of applicants selected for Part II so that the score reflects the overall assessment of the applicant, i.e. including Part I of the examination. Your final scores are those received in the second part of the examination.