Church Music (Master of Music)

Regular course length 4 semesters
Course leading to the degree of Master of Music in Church Music (Protestant or Catholic)

The Master’s degree course in Church Music offers comprehensive opportunities to add greater depth to the knowledge they have gained while studying for the Bachelor’s degree. The traditional wide diversity of subjects taught in a course in Church Music is maintained, so that graduates will afterwards be eligible for appointment to a prominent position in the world of church music. On the other hand, students are able, and indeed are explicitly encouraged, to adjust the emphasis placed on the individual disciplines in such a way as to develop an individual personality profile of their own.

Course content and objective
In the Master’s degree course in Church Music the focus is on developing individual skills in practical artistic activities and in developing one’s field of work on one’s own responsibility. Accordingly, areas already covered in the first degree course are largely excluded from the curriculum, which is thereby so boiled down as to leave plenty of room for the pursuit of these aims. Graduates will be in a position to present and communicate forms of musical interpretation, creativity and improvisation in the public domain on their own initiative.

Accordingly, a large part of the course consists of individual artistic tuition, while also providing for training in greater depth in competence in musical outreach (instrumental and singing teaching, musical work with children). Concert and concert-like situations occupy a position of priority in the course. The musical project that takes the place of a Master’s dissertation brings together practical artistic and theoretical academic components.

Individual artistic tuition in the principal instrumental study subject, Organ literature performance, is dependent on the availability of a large variety of different instruments matching the different schools and styles of composition. This requires a large degree of flexibility in the tuition venues. Thanks to the different types of organ available in the surrounding area, the HMTMH is able to offer very good and diverse opportunities for this. Thus the student is able to try out and to gain direct and authentic experience of the specific performance styles that make up the course content.

In the subject Accompanying congregational singing/Improvisation, close contact is sought to the Master’s degree courses in Composition and in JazzRockPop.

Tuition in choral and orchestral conducting is given in specialist courses in these subjects that are also attended by students from other study programmes such as Conducting: thus Church Music students too are offered a wide range of opportunities to gain practical experience with vocal and instrumental groups of varying compositions, and consequently a enjoy wealth of possibilities for developing their individual talents. The same applies to the conducting of children’s choirs.

Requirements for admission
The Master’s degree course in Church Music is conceived exclusively as a second degree course for students who have obtained a good Bachelor of Music degree in Church Music (Protestant or Catholic): students whose grades in the three subjects Organ literature performance, Accompanying congregational singing/ Improvisation and Choral and orchestral conducting in the final examination for that degree do not add up to more than 5.3 may be accepted for the Master’s degree course.

Career outlook
The degree of Master of Music in Church Music (Protestant or Catholic) opens the way for appointment to a prominent position as a church musician (previously known as an “A” post). In addition, thanks to the wide range of areas that graduates have achieved qualification in, the Master’s degree in Church Music will enable them to pursue many other kinds of career as professional musicians.

Programme learning outcomes


With the Master of Music, Church Music (Protestant or Catholic, formerly Church Music A Diploma), it is possible to take on an outstanding church musician position (A position). In addition, the Master's degree in Church Music offers many other job opportunities in the music profession thanks to its comprehensive qualification.

The postgraduate Master's degree programme in Church Music offers extensive opportunities to deepen the knowledge acquired in the Bachelor's degree programme. The traditional diversity of subjects on the church music degree programme is retained in that the ability to be employed in a prominent church musician position is guaranteed. The special weighting of the individual disciplines enables students to develop an individual personality profile.

Students of the Master's programme in Church Music develop valid, personal interpretative statements on the main instrument organ and on the second instrument (piano, harpsichord, fortepiano, jazz piano or keyboard) under their own artistic and methodological-technical responsibility and to present them confidently in public. Stylistic knowledge of the immense organ repertoire (9 centuries of music) is deepened and expanded. To this end, there are individual lessons of 90 minutes and the examination of different types of organ (practical work on the organs of the university, the city of Hanover and organ excursions). In the area of improvisation, a creative approach - with stylistic templates or in the student's own musical language - is sought, the results of which can be used spontaneously and appropriately in church services and concerts. In the conducting subjects, the practical application of essential conducting skills in the presentation of scores is sought. The aim is to develop a convincing musical-artistic leadership personality with a correspondingly high level of technical ability and methodological competence in the context of church work.

Building on the qualification objectives of the Bachelor's degree, students are prepared for the qualitatively and quantitatively greater demands of an A-level position. Special attention is paid to the development of a convincing leadership personality in both the artistic and practical areas. In particular, students acquire the skills needed to develop, plan and implement worship formats and artistic projects. Dealing with vocal and instrumental ensembles of different sizes and compositions and the resulting challenges promote personal development, which remains the central objective.

Master's students usually already have several years of professional experience in parish churches behind them. This experience particularly favours their social commitment in the context of church music activities. The changes in society are reflected in the changing job description of the church musician. A parish church is an important cultural institution in society, which obliges practising church musicians to be particularly creative, responsible and committed.



Examination Office

  • Judith Degro

    Department for Studies and Teaching | Examination Board Pianoforte B. Mus., Keyboard Instruments M. Mus., Musical Performance and Education B. Mus./M. Mus., Church Music B. Mus./M. Mus.

    Hanover University of Music, Drama and Media
    Neues Haus 1, 30175 Hannover
    E001 | Loebensteinstraße 2

    Phone: +49 (0)511 3100-7254

    Office hours: Mo 09:30-12 Uhr | Di 09:30-12 Uhr und (nur online) 14-15:30 Uhr | Do 14-15:30 Uhr | und nach Vereinbarung | Digitaler Besprechungsraum:

Registration Office

  • Beate Heitmüller

    Department for Studies and Teaching | Matriculation Office, Examination Office Junior Students, Solo Class

    Hanover University of Music, Drama and Media
    Neues Haus 1, 30175 Hannover
    E007 | Loebensteinstraße 2

    Phone: +49 (0)511 3100-7223

    Office hours: Mo 09:30-12 Uhr | Di 09:30-12 Uhr und (nur online) 14-15:30 Uhr | Do 14-15:30 Uhr | und nach Vereinbarung | Digitaler Besprechungsraum:

Last modified: 2024-01-09

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