Photo: Benjamin Ealovega

Sakari Oramo appointed Professor at the Sibelius Academy

Conductor Sakari Oramo has been invited to become Professor of Orchestral Training and Orchestral Conducting at the Sibelius Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki for the five-year period 1 Jan 2020 to 31 Dec 2024. He succeeds Professor Atso Almila, who will retire when his term expires in 2019.

Sakari Oramo (b. 1965) is one of the world’s most sought-after and distinguished conductors. He is currently Chief Conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra. He is also Principal Conductor of the Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra and the West Coast Kokkola Opera.

Oramo studied with Jorma Panula in the Sibelius Academy conducting class and graduated in 1992. He also participated in masterclasses given by Ilya Musin and Atso Almila. Before his conducting studies, he studied the violin at the Sibelius Academy and the Utrecht Conservatory in the Netherlands. He was once leader of the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and a founding member of the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra and continues to perform extensively as a chamber musician and soloist.

Oramo was previously Chief Conductor of the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Music Director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. He has appeared as a guest conductor with more than 30 orchestras in Europe and the USA. He has held teaching positions with the Birmingham Conservatory, the New England Conservatory and the Royal College of Music in Stockholm, and he has mentored young conductors.

Oramo says he is very excited to be able to carry on the work of his predecessors – Jorma Panula, Leif Segerstam and Atso Almila – and bring the training programme forward to the 2020s.

“The Sibelius Academy retains its status as one of the world’s leading institutions for orchestral and conducting training thanks to its continuous development. Working with students who take this business seriously involves transferring decades of accumulated know-how to the next generation,” says Oramo.

“In classical music, there are no short cuts. Professional competence in this field requires the mastery of an extensive skill set, and this governs the development of the individual characteristics and capabilities of each student. It is important to expose students to other musicians and to audiences. I am very interested in continuing and expanding cooperation both within the University of the Arts and with Finnish professional orchestras.”

Kaarlo Hildén, Dean of the Sibelius Academy, notes that it is exceptional for a conductor pursuing an active international career to be willing to dedicate himself to the development of a training programme.

“We are privileged to have someone like Sakari take over this distinguished professorship.”

Sakari Oramo was appointed to the position by Jari Perkiömäki, Rector of the University of the Arts Helsinki, on proposal by Dean Kaarlo Hildén.


Further information:
Dean Kaarlo Hildén, The Sibelius Academy, University of the Arts Helsinki
tel +358 40 710 4312,