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Study description

The study and creation of a wide variety of compositions and the development of an independent sound language in the field of modern music, as well as the analysis and arrangement of contemporary compositions, are the focus of composition studies at VMI. In addition to the promotion of individual talents in the central artistic main subject, which takes the form of weekly individual lessons with experienced composers, a number of other teaching subjects guarantee a comprehensive and professional education. These include, for example, computer-aided composing, media composition or film music, as well as courses in the fields of music theory, musicology, studio technology or marketing. The program ends with a state and internationally recognized degree that entitles students to pursue further master's studies.

Study profile

The artistic-creative application of a wide variety of composition techniques is the focus of the composition program, which leads to the highest level of musical training. This takes place primarily in the central artistic major as well as in a specially established composer ensemble, which works weekly with the students on their compositions and arrangements under the direction of experienced composers. There is also a lively and musical exchange with the internationally oriented community of the VMI, which lays the foundation for collaboration with musicians and creative artists from a wide variety of musical genres. A number of supplementary subjects of various orientations expand the spectrum of this study program to a comprehensive and practice-oriented education, which is completed with a state and internationally recognized degree that entitles the student to further master studies.

Study focus

  •  Creating own compositions for different instrumentations;

  •  Learning basic and advanced composition and arrangement rules;

  •  Examination of compositional technique, voice leading and arrangement techniques;

  •  Acquisition of general musical as well as music-theoretical-scientific knowledge;

  •  Study of melodic, harmonic and rhythmic structures;

  •  Training of the musical ear and study of acoustics;

  •  Study of media law and management;

  •  Development of business strategies and marketing opportunities;

  •  Scientific work with a special focus on composition;

  •  Work with computer-aided composition techniques and multimedia;

  •  Examination of new media and film music;

  •  Acquisition of knowledge in composition, counterpoint and orchestration;

  •  Study of studio and recording techniques and microphoning;

  •  Development of compositional and artistic skills on the piano;

Image by Gabriel Gurrola

Study Details

Start: February and September

Duration of study: 8 semesters

Credits: 240 ECTS

Prerequisites: Previous practical and theoretical knowledge, as well as an online registration for the entrance examination (audition). Persons from non-EU countries need a valid residence permit (student visa) at the beginning of their studies, which can be applied for after successful completion of the entrance examination.

Prior studies: Courses or years of study previously completed at other educational institutions may be credited toward the degree program and shorten the duration of the study accordingly.

Teachers: Training is provided by a professional team of internationally active musicians, composers, and music educators, as well as experts from the music industry, creative industries, studio technology, and musicology.

Curriculum: Study plan / Completion plan

Semester abroad: Being awarded the Erasmus Charter for Higher Education (ECHE) by the European Union enables students of the VMI to study at a partner University of the VMI within their education with financial support for the duration of 3-12 months. In addition, funded internships abroad can be completed at various European institutions and companies in the international music industry.

Degree: The program ends with a nationally and internationally recognized degree. According to the Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research, the certificates and diplomas issued by the VMI are equivalent to those of state Universities and Colleges, are comparable to a Bachelor's degree and therefore entitle the holder to pursue further master's studies*.

Follow-up studies: Within the framework of a cooperation agreement with the ICMP Institute of Contemporary Music Performance, a London-based partner University of the VMI, there is the possibility of obtaining the academic degrees of Bachelor or Master through a two-semester period of study at the ICMP, while at the same time gaining valuable experience in the musical metropolis of London.

Tuition fees:

€ 120 one-time enrollment fee

€ 450 monthly tuition fee

Details on tuition and scholarships

*Further studies at other educational institutions are subject to the availability of free study places as well as the admission requirements of the respective university or college, over which VMI naturally has no influence, but can provide assistance with applications, especially to partner universities and partner colleges.

Online registration

Online registrations for the entrance examination are basically possible at any time, free of charge and without obligation. They are used to determine prior practical-theoretical knowledge and whether this is sufficient to be accepted into the desired course of study (otherwise, alternative training options may be suggested). The entrance examinations usually take place on the following dates:

For the winter semester (start of studies in September): May/June*

For the summer semester (start of studies in February): November/December*

Details on the entrance examination

*Alternatively, other dates may be assigned.

Supporting industry partners:

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