Application deadline: 15 April (non EER applicants: before 15 Feb.)
Tuition fee: Visit Programme Website
Start date: September  2015
Credits (ECTS): 120 ECTS
Duration full-time: 24 months
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time
More information: Go to university website

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The Master of Music (MMus) gives you the opportunity to develop further as an instrumentalist, vocalist, composer, choir conductor, producer, sound designer or music technologist.

You do so by drawing up a personal study plan that forms the basis for the two-year Masterís course. Prior to your application for the Master of Music, we ask you to focus on a certain profile. You will then develop this profile in the study plan and describe how you want to shape it. Fixed components of the course include research (more or less practically oriented) and an internship.

Which pathway is given where?

The Performance pathway is given at HKU Utrechts Conservatorium. The Music Design pathway is given at HKU Music and Technology. The specialisation subject Composition is given at both institutes: Composition for the Stage at HKU Utrechts Conservatorium and Composition for the Media and Composition Electronic Music at HKU Music and Technology in Hilversum.


The Master of Music Performance pathway has two programmes, within which you can focus on different areas. For both programmes, you will put together your package of subjects in consultation with your tutor, depending on your area of focus. The compulsory components for everyone are lessons in the main subject, research, internship, entrepreneurship and a certain number of points for subjects. Within these subjects, the balance between more practical and more theoretical subjects is determined yourself (in consultation with your tutor). It is also possible to take subjects at other schools within HKU, or even at other institutes. This initiative is taken solely by the student.
In agreement, it is also possible to take some of the lessons in the main subject externally. You can only do so by requesting and obtaining approval from the course leader. Each Masterís student also has the opportunity of choosing an individual subsidiary subject (this then takes the place of any coaching).

Performing Musician for the StagesEnsemble work

Your focus is on ensemble work; in classical music, early music or jazz&pop. Alongside the lessons in your individual main subject, you will also take part in various ensemble and orchestra projects, at school or externally, sometimes supported by theoretical subjects. This applies to both instrumentalists and singers. You round off your Masterís degree with a concert in which you present yourself mainly as an ensemble musician.

Classical singer

As a classical singer, you can specialise in one or more of the various singing disciplines: oratorio, opera, songs/chamber music and choral singing. Alongside the lessons in your individual main subject, you will also take part in group lessons and related projects, at school or externally, sometimes supported by theoretical subjects.

Solo repertoire

Within the classical genre, following recommendation from the admissions committee, you can focus on solo repertoire, and prepare a solo recital for your graduation. Your Masterís course will also include subjects and projects to support this, e.g. audition training, repertoire analysis and a small concert series you organise yourself as an internship, as well as research into supply and demand in the current market, and aspects of PR.

Coaching (starting from September 2014 if there are enough applications)

Pianists wishing to specialise in accompanying singers and/or instrumentalists can do so in Utrecht from September 2014. The lessons in your main subject will focus on the more technical side of accompaniment. And group lessons will deal with subjects like sight-reading, communication and repertoire knowledge. You will also have the opportunity to accompany fellow students in lessons, recitals and projects.

Choir conducting

You can do a Masterís course in choir conducting after completing a Bachelorís degree in choir conducting, or on successful admission to the Masterís course. Preferably, you already conduct several choirs and want to develop your skills and knowledge further. On the Masterís course, you will take many group lessons that focus on both baton technique and rehearsal technique. You can specialise in a particular genre, including light music.


If you choose composition as your main subject (possible on completion of a Bachelorís degree in composition, or on successful admission to the Masterís course), you will focus on composing for various instrumental combinations and building up your portfolio. In doing so, it is important that you also take responsibility for organising the performance of your compositions, and that you record the performances or get them recorded. The research project may be conducted, for example, in the area of musical creative processes, and you may do your internship in collaboration with an external ensemble or orchestra. Masterís students in Utrecht often work together on interdisciplinary projects, whether or not in a broader HKU connection.

Combination of instrumental/vocal main subject and composition

On the Masterís course, it is possible to do a combination programme of an instrumental or vocal main subject and composition. You can do so within classical music or jazz&pop. You will focus on one of the two (instrumental/vocal or composition), taking the other subject as a subsidiary. You will work towards a final exam, in which you will perform your own work and have your work performed by others. The balance of the two components in your final exam will be discussed at the start of your studies. On admission to the course, you must demonstrate sufficient skill in playing/singing, as well as compositional skills.


A Masterís course in carillon prepares you for the job of city carillonneur, for example. The course deals with all the aspects of this profession, in individual lessons as well as in group lessons, projects and excursions. This course has an informal and intimate character. You work with a small group of students in a special area of the professional field. The Carillon programme is given at both the Netherlands Carillon School in Amersfoort and the Utrechts Conservatorium (the general theory subjects).

Performing Musician in Applied Contexts

Teaching and entrepreneurship

Many musicians have a mixed professional practice, in which teaching plays an important part, alongside playing music. And the majority of musicians carry out this work (in part) as independent entrepreneurs. In the Masterís course, you can focus on a combination of these professional aspects, with musicianship still forming the basis of your studies. This combination includes subjects associated with teaching (group dynamics and processes, teaching young children, different teaching forms and specialisation in pedagogics and didactics), with community art (working with groups, leading workshops, compositions and group improvisation) and with entrepreneurship. You have the opportunity of taking supplementary subjects at the School of Art and Economics. The balance between these subjects is determined solely by you. Through your choice of subjects and research project, you show the subject with which you want to present yourself as a musician. Your internship, too, is done within an applied context, for example at a festival, arts centre or educational department of an orchestra/production house.

Musician 3.0 (starting from September 2014 if there are enough applications)

The key terms of the Musician 3.0 course are Performing, Creating and Communicating. The Masterís course Musician 3.0 includes the element of musical leadership, still approached from the 3 basic elements. Within 3.0, we do not refer to one main subject, although you do get individual instrumental lessons. Preferably, you play more than one instrument. For two years, you will work intensively on finding your way of directing musical/creative processes: your own processes, those of and with others, and those in an interdisciplinary context.

Church music

On completion of a Bachelorís degree in church music, organ or choir conducting, you can take a Masterís course in church music. Your Ďmain subjectí is church organ playing or church choir conducting. Alongside this, you will take various church music subjects that prepare you for the professional practice of a church musician. If you are already working in a church, you can do your research and/or internship within this context.


The Faculty Board assesses the validity of foreign diplomas. All foreign diplomas, certificates and lists of marks should be supplied in the Dutch, English, French or German language; other languages are not accepted.

Language Test

All students whose mother tongue is not English, who intend to follow their studies in the English language are required to take a language test to show that their mastery of the language is sufficient to succesfully complete their studies. There are two standard tests:

  • The TOEFL-test (you need a score of 575)
  • The IELTS-test (you need a score of 6.5)

English Language Requirements

IELTS band: 6.5
TOEFL paper-based test score : 575

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