Church music, bachelor and master

This versatile programme gives you the competence to work in diverse roles in the field of church music. Our teachers are esteemed experts of their genre.

Kirkkomusiikin koulutusohjelma

Why study here?

Come and study at one of the best performing arts universities in the world! We provide the highest level of church music training that prepares you for working in diverse expert roles and development positions.

Besides focusing on your musical skills, you will also improve your knowledge of pedagogy, theology and research. You can choose to complete teacher’s pedagogical studies or studies that will give you the qualifications for a church musician post within the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland.

You can apply to study either in Helsinki or in Kuopio in Eastern Finland.

Content and objective of the programme

The core of church music training is studies in vocal music, conducting and organ music. You will also study accompaniment, arranging and composing music, improvisation, pedagogy, all-around music skills and research skills. The degree gives you the competence to work as a cantor and in several other roles in the field of music.

As a master’s student, you will increase your knowledge and skills in instrument studies, pedagogy and research. You will choose an area of specialisation: choral conducting, singing, organ music, or research. You can carry out a project or design your own unique module of artistic studies. The degree requirements include a written work and a thesis project.

You can also choose courses organised by the other two academies of Uniarts Helsinki and complete joint studies that are available for all students.

In addition to educability, the applicant must have good musical skills and knowledge and motivation for church music studies. The degree programmes in Kuopio and Helsinki have the same entrance examination.

Versatile career opportunities

After completing a degree in church music, you can work in diverse expert roles and development positions. You can also work as a musician, pedagogue, or a researcher. As a cantor in a parish, you are in charge of planning and performing the music for church services. You can also work as a singer, musician or conductor in the field of church music. Church musicians also work as performers, composers and researchers.

Learn more about our instruments

Since autumn 2011, the Sibelius Academy’s church and organ music programmes have had the opportunity to use the Helsinki Music Centre’s Organo Hall. The hall’s three organs are available there for teaching and concerts. Various organs are also available for students’ use at the Sibelius Academy’s N-building on Nervanderinkatu in Helsinki as well as in Kuopio at the Kuopio Music Centre and at Hermanni. Classes are also held in churches in cooperation with parishes in the Helsinki area and in Kuopio.


Our teachers are some of the best experts in their respective fields. In addition to the permanent teaching staff, the programme welcomes international top experts as guests on a regular basis.

Doctoral studies

It is possible to complete a licentiate and a doctoral degree at the University as a third-cycle degree. After graduating with a master’s degree, you will have the option to apply for doctoral studies in music and specialise in research-oriented, artistic or applied doctoral studies.

Find out more

Student experiences

Admissions guide

Target degree and length of study

Master of Music (MMus)
5,5 years

Application period

Next possible time to apply is in January 2024. Studies begin in August 2024.

Application languages

English, Finnish, Swedish Read more about the language skill requirements

Tuition fee

Annual tuition fee €5,000 for students studying in English and come from outside the EU and EEA countries.
Read more about tuition fees

Supervising teacher

  • Timo Kiiskinen

    Professor, organ improvisation, organ, liturgical playing, Church music and organ (Helsinki), Sibelius Academy
  • Seppo Kirkinen

    Lecturer, church music, working life skills, learning and teaching music, Church music (Kuopio), Sibelius Academy


Sibelius Academy

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