Jazz (major subject: instrument or voice)

Grow into a unique and visionary jazz musician in an international degree programme under the guidance of top-quality teachers.

Mies soittaa lyömäsoittimia

Why study here?

You can develop into a versatile jazz professional under the guidance of Finland’s leading musicians and international top names. We are known worldwide for our high-quality teaching, comprehensive curriculum and the abundant master class activity which also includes possibilities to play and work with the top-notch international jazz musicians.

Content and objective of the programme

During the studies you will receive the necessary knowledge and skills in African-American music, music culture and performance practices to become a professional. Upon graduating, you may take on demanding roles as a musician, band leader, composer&arranger and pedagogue. Finnish jazz professionals such as Timo Lassy, Verneri Pohjola, Aki Rissanen and Kalle Kalima are all alumni of the Sibelius Academy who have established themselves in the Finnish and international music scene.

Bachelor’s studies

Jazz students complete studies in ensemble playing, aural skills, rhythm and arrangement that support their major subject. Optional studies and possible minor subject studies are also included in the degree. The degree also includes language and music technology studies.

Master’s studies

At the master’s degree stage, you can choose almost a third of your courses freely. In addition to instrument classes and ensemble playing, you may choose e.g. music business courses or pedagogical studies needed for working as a teacher. During your studies you will also participate in different musical projects, master classes and social events.

You can also choose courses organized by the other departments in Sibelius Academy and the other two academies of the University of the Arts and complete so-called joint studies that are available for all students.

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 jazz and specialise in research-oriented, artistic or applied doctoral studies.

Here are some of our doctors of music. You can find their theses via the links.

Sami Linna http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi-fe2019112243797
Mikko Helevä http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-329-071-6
Riitta Paakki http://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-329-038-9
Antti Rissanen http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi-fe2018050923728
Markus Ketola
Jarno Kukkonen http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi-fe20052000
Jari Perkiömäki http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi-fe20031086


The Sibelius Academy’s teaching staff represents the top of the Finnish jazz scene. In 2018-2020, international teacher guests included:

  • Jim Beard
  • Seamus Blake
  • Peter Bernstein
  • René Marie
  • Christie Dashiell
  • Sinne Eeg
  • Jamie Baum
  • Jeff Hirshfield
  • Aaron Parks
  • Tony Malaby
  • Guillermo Klein
  • Marquis Hill
  • Frank McComb
  • Tim Hagans
  • Craig Taborn
  • Mark Soskin
  • Billy Cobham
  • Aaron Goldberg
  • Matt Penman
  • Leon Parker
  • Jonathan Kreisberg
  • Martin Bejerano
  • Phil Markowitz
  • Jeff “Tain” Watts
  • Paul Bollenback
  • Pedro Martins
  • Godwin Louis
  • Samora Pinderhughes
  • Terell Stafford
  • Jason Moran
  • Dana Hall
  • Ralph Alessi
  • Ashley Kahn.

The programme also collaborates with the Manhattan School of Music via video conference. Master classes via video streaming have been held by John Riley, Dave Liebman, Phil Markowitz and Gretchen Parlato.

Applying to the programme

Our University is one of the most sought-after places to study in Finland. Browse the applicant statistics from previous years.

Sibis Alumni Big Band

Our unique big band brings together students, teachers and prominent alumni.

Videos of our students

You can apply to

Degree Programme in Jazz, major subject options: jazz instrument or voice

  • bachelor’s and master’s (5,5 years)
  • master’s (2,5 years)

Target degree

Master of Music (MMus)


Sibelius Academy

Application languages

English, Finnish, Swedish Read more about language skill requirements

Tuition fee

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

Application period

Next possible time to apply is in January 2022. Studies begin in August 2022.


Jussi Kannaste Department Head Sami Linna Department Head