Bachelor of Music
The Jazz/Pop department at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln has a longstanding reputation as one of the favorite destinations for young musicians and prospective students.
This reputation is due to the successful academic programs, but also the location of the city itself. Cologne's music scene is one-of-a-kind in Germany and is shaped by a jazz tradition dating back to the 1950s with bands such as the Clark Boland Bigband, the Kurt Edelhagen Orchestra, and the WDR Bigband. The bands also propelled the club scene forward with their orchestra musicians and guest soloists and conductors.
Conversely, Cologne’s many freelance musicians (many of whom are graduates of the University) have formed a spirited independent scene over the years, from which new bands and projects are continuously emerging.
Various weekly jam sessions in Cologne’s theaters and bars give students the opportunity to quickly connect with the city’s music scene. This scene also includes multiple independent big bands that regularly perform concerts. Many of Cologne's students either played or still play in the Bujazzo (Bundes-Jugend-Jazz-Orchester) ensemble or in professional bands. Moreover, graduates of the University currently hold soloist positions in all of Germany’s radio big bands.
Cologne’s excellent job market and the jazz related jobs the “media city” offers students are another reason why the city is so attractive to freelance musicians. The broadcasting stations WDR, RTL, Pro 7, and SAT 1 produce many shows here in Cologne and that is why some students from the local jazz/pop program had the opportunity to perform in the big band at one of RTL’s prime-time shows.
With their almost daily music programs, the WDR, the Philharmonie, the Alte Pfandhaus, and especially Stadtgarten and Loft form a line-up of exquisite music ensembles performing today’s music that is unique in Germany. These groups are irreplaceable as mediums for students to continue developing as musicians.
Academic degree: Bachelor of Music (B.Mus.)
Duration of degree program: 8 semesters (4 years)
Start of program: Winter semester
Degree requirements: 240 ECTS credits
Admission requirements: See aptitude test