Sibafest opens its doors behind the scenes of music studies for the first time at the Sibelius Academy

The main event of Uniarts Helsinki’s Sibelius Academy, Sibafest, will take over the Helsinki Music Centre on 26–27 January 2024. Sibafest marks the beginning of a year that will offer nearly a thousand concerts.

During the festival, both the audience and the academy staff have the opportunity to participate in concerts, open rehearsals, panel discussions, and workshops at the Helsinki Music Centre.

“Sibafest is a celebration for the entire academy, where we shed light on the secrets of our artistic work, pedagogical practices, and new ideas to each other,” says Sibafest’s artistic director Merzi Rajala.

Sibafest celebrates each and every one of us 

On Friday, 26 January, all teaching and work at the Sibelius Academy will revolve around Sibafest. The events of the festival that are taking place in the Sibelius Academy’s facilities are aimed exclusively at the academy’s students and staff.

“We will engage in discussions on topics that interest us and explore ideas from different departments not only in panel discussions but also by playing music together. We also showcase rarer instruments and playing techniques. At the same time, we get to know new people, come up with new collaboration ideas, and have fun,” Rajala explains with excitement.

On Friday, you can meet new people through the Sibelius Academy’s speed dating session, celebrate the Sibelius Academy’s Person of the Year, get to know people working for the academy’s service teams, and participate in competitions as well as in various workshops, presentations and discussions.

Workshops, concerts, and discussions will continue on Saturday, 27 January, when all events are open to the public, too. Sibafest will culminates in Saturday’s closing party, where you can jam and spend time with other people.

“At Sibafest, both the staff and the audience are welcome to try something new for themselves, perhaps by improvising opera or exploring a more unfamiliar musical aesthetic,” adds Rajala.

The festival’s dozens of events, concerts, workshops, panel discussions, and rehearsals are free of charge. The only exception is the Sibelius Academy Symphony Orchestra’s concert on Saturday evening in the Concert Hall of the Helsinki Music Centre. Members of the Uniarts Helsinki community can reserve free tickets for the concert. More information will be available later.

Registration for internal workshops opens on 15 December

Explore a different aesthetic! Play, chat, participate, tell, show! During the festival, we build networks, get inspired and gather new influences.

The festival offers a rich selection of workshops where each department of the academy is represented one way or another. Registration opens on 15 December 2023.

Some highlights from the workshops include

  • Improvising opera
  • Secrets of studios, electronic music, mixing, recording
  • Recorder guru
  • Rune song jam session