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Welcome to Freiburg University of Music

In the heart of Europe

Located in the heart of Europe near the borders shared by Germany, France and Switzerland, the Hochschule für Musik (University of Music) in Freiburg is recognized as one of Europe´s best high-level training centres for the entire range of the traditional music professions.

The Hochschule and the beautiful city of Freiburg offer impressive resources to students and performers. The University of Music presents over 450 public concerts, operas and recitals; perfomances given by the orchestras, choirs and ensembles are often praised for their high artistic level. 

In addition, an Opera Theater, the SWR Symphony Orchestra, the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra, several professional contemporary music ensembles, and a large number of amateur orchestras and choirs enrich the musical landscape of the city. The library and the library of the New Music Institute are located within in the building, while the librairies of the Albert Ludwig University are nearby.

The Hochschule für Musik Freiburg offers artistic and pedagogical training in a broad spectrum of musical fields as well as the possibility of earning a PhD in musicology or music education at one of Germany's most renowned schools of music.

The Hochschule für Musik Freiburg has attracted a multitude of enthusiastic educators, scholars, and prominent musicians, like Aurèle Nicolet, Edith Picht-Axenfeld, Wolfgang Fortner, Carl Seemann, Vitaly Margulis, Ulrich Koch, Wilfried Gruhn, Lars Ulrich Abraham, Erich Doflein, Heinz Holliger, and Klaus Huber. 
These figures helped make the institution into what it is today and had a great impact on generations of students, including the violinist Daishin Kashimoto (1st Concertmaster of the Berlin Philharmonic), the violist Tabea Zimmermann, the conductor and composer Hans Zender, the cellists Jean-Guihen Queyras and Lukas Fels (Arditti Quartet), the pianist Bernd Glemser, the singer Rachel Harnisch, the video and performance artist Nam Jun Paik, and the composer Wolfgang Rihm.

Today, numerous students in the classes of renowned professors are regularly decorated with prestigious international awards.

Studying in Freiburg

Founded in 1946, the school had its roots in the baroque Wentzinger House on the Cathedral Square in the heart of the historic old town. Today, classes are held in a modern building bathed in natural light with a spacious foyer on a landscaped campus in eastern Freiburg. Our students experience Freiburg as a town with a great civic spirit, which boasts an unusually dynamic music scene relative to its size and which is blessed with a mild climate and a rich culinary tradition.

Individualized Education

With a choice of 35 major fields, the school offers a musical education tailored to the individual needs and skills of its students. The educational offerings are organized into eight degree programs, ranging from bachelor of music to the doctorate.

Freiburg Pre-College Academy (FAB) offers a first-rate preparatory course for young musical talents aged 12 or older. Credits from the course are taken into account in the entrance examination and a later course of study at the Hochschule für Musik Freiburg.

The Bachelor of Music is an eight-semester degree program for beginning students. It may be earned in any of 28 instrumental, vocal, or other major fields, and students can choose between an artistic or pedagogical emphasis.

Graduates of a bachelor program have the opportunity to continue studying toward the Master of Music for an additional four semesters. The master may be earned as a consecutive course of study following an accredited bachelor degree in the same major field or as a non-consecutive course in the fields of elementary-level music education, ensemble singing, film music, ear training, historical performance practice, art song, music and movement/rhythmic training, or music theory.

Highly talented graduates of a master of music program can go on to take a two- or four-semester postgraduate degree program in Concert Exam/Master Class.

An education as a church musician begins with the Bachelor of Music/Church Music, an eight-semester course of study for beginning students. An additional four-semester postgraduate course of study leads to the Master of Music/Church Music.

The degree program School Music prepares beginning students and students transferring from other institutions for a career as a music teacher in secondary schools. This program typically takes eight semesters to complete the Bachelor and another four semesters for the masters degree. Students of this field also study a second subject at the Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg.

The Hochschule für Musik Freiburg confers the degree Doctor of Philosophy in the fields of musicology and music education. The prerequisite for admission to Doctoral Studies is the successful completion of a course of study in the appropriate field of at least eight semesters duration at a university or another qualified higher education institution.


The diverse course offerings encompass a continually evolving network of interdisciplinary partnerships, projects for encouraging reflection, and master classes, all of which serve the common goal of forming mature and intelligent musicians who know what, how, and why they are playing, singing, or teaching.

The Hochschule für Musik Freiburg hosts several specialized institutes, each with a specific educational or scientific emphasis. One of the oldest is the New Music Institute, founded in 1964 by Wolfgang Fortner and expanded by Klaus Huber. It has four composition classes, its own ensemble, a studio for electronic music and acoustics called "selma," its own concert series, and a special library for new music.
The Freiburg Institute for Musicians' Medicine (fim) was founded in 2005 in cooperation with the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Freiburg. It is engaged in research on typical health problems confronted by musicians, prophylaxis, and the optimization of performance, as well as on the physiological and psychological foundations of vocal functions and music making. The Center for Musicians' Medicine at the Freiburg University Medical Center is available to students as a therapeutic option.
The Institute of Music Theater carries out ambitiously directed, staged, and conducted music theater projects, giving students the experience of playing roles in a professional theater production: from experimental plays and debut performances to classics of the opera repertoire and early music.
The Institute of Historical Performance Practice is devoted to profound inquiry into historically informed interpretational approaches, an area in which the school has been intimately engaged for many years. Many members of the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra, for instance, are alumni of the Musikhochschule Freiburg.

International Relations

The international exchange of students and faculty is becoming more and more important and is promoted accordingly at the Hochschule für Musik Freiburg. 
For example, by the end of the academic year 2008/09 the school had signed ERASMUS agreements with 41 other higher education institutions. In addition, the school has signed direct agreements with six partner institutions: the Eastman School of Music in Rochester (USA), the Academy of Music in Odessa (Ukraine), the Frederik Chopin Academy of Music in Warsaw (Poland), the Sydney Conservatorium of Music (Australia), the University of Arts in Kyoto (Japan), and the University of Toronto (Canada). All agreements are evaluated continually for their efficiency and their strategic relevance for students and the school itself as a higher education institution.


The intensive practical work being done at the school is manifested in over 450 concerts, evening lectures, opera performances, and academic events per year, activities which are an essential element of cultural life in the music town Freiburg. Our students are active in numerous ensembles at the school, including the Freiburg Drum Ensemble, the orchestra, the choir, the chamber orchestra, the chamber choir, and the school's big band, as well as the Schola Gregoriana and the Women's schola Exsulta Sion Freiburg.

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