About the hmt

New and old: history of the hmt

In the literal sense, the Rostock University of Music and Drama is very new, as it was only founded in 1994. However, its seemingly youthful façade conceals years of tradition. A college of music, drama and dance was founded here back in 1947 under the direction of composer Rudolf Wagner-Régeny, and later became an offshoot of Berlin’s “Hanns Eisler” college for training music students.

Rostock can also look back on 40 years of theatrical history. Founded in 1968 as the "Staatliche Schauspielschule Rostock" (Rostock College of Drama), it became part of Berlin’s “Ernst Busch” drama college in 1981. At the end of 1990/beginning of 1991, it split off from the Berlin college and continued life as the College of Dramatic Arts of the federal state of Mecklenburg-West Pomerania.

The foundation of the hmt on January 12, 1994, gave rise to an independent arts college combining musical and dramatic training under one roof. Prof. Wilfrid Jochims, who formerly held a post at the music college in Cologne, was appointed the founding Rector.

After a few years in provisional buildings, we succeeded in expanding the former Katharinenstift, a listed building in Rostock’s eastern old town, and transforming it into a modern arts college. It has been a prominent feature of the college landscape since 2001.

Today, the hmt is one of Europe’s most popular training institutions. 570 students from 30 countries are studying here. The hmt is member of der Association Européenne des Conservatoires, Académies de Musique et Musikhochschulen (AEC) and in 2015 the hmt was the first university to join the "Deutsche Bühnenverein".

During the last 25 years the hmt has established itself as a desirable events location: teachers and students present their work to a critical public in more than 300 performances a year – many of these events are now seen as insider tips in Rostock’s cultural calendar.

Prof. Dr. Dr. Benjamin Lang has been the university Rector since April 2023. He is the seventh rector at the university.

The departments

Rostock University of Music and Drama is divided into four departments:

  • Department of Music
    The Department of Music is at the heart of all of hmt Rostock’s musical and artistic training. The instrumental and vocal bachelor’s and master’s degree courses, the core modules in music theory and artistic practice for the teacher-training degree courses for future music teachers, the artistic subjects conducting, accompaniment, composing, music theory, pop/world music, and the teaching of instruments and voice all belong to the Department of Music.
    The study objective focuses on gaining both artistic excellence and individual specialisations. Creativity and reflective independence, a detailed understanding of sound, and imaginative solutions for tackling traditional interpretations are all important components of the teaching mission at our University.
  • Department of Musicology, Music Theory and Composition
    This institute is responsible for the musicology, music theory and composition degree programmes, musicology and music theory seminars and lectures for all music degree programmes as well as doctoral and post-doctoral supervision in the subjects of musicology and music theory. This institute emerged from the Institute of Musicology, Music Pedagogy and Theatre Pedagogy in November 2023. Marinus Jan Ruesink was elected as its first spokesperson.
  • Department of Music Education and Theatre Education
    This department is responsible for the teacher-training degree courses for future teachers of music and drama, as well as the master’s degree courses Musicology and Music Education. The teacher-training degree courses are provided for all kinds of schools.
    We consider studying, on the one hand, to be the expansion of one’s own horizon with regard to the diverse manifestations of culture; on the other, it is the consolidation of individual learning interests. Thinking and acting at the Department of Musicology, Music Education and Theatre Education is shaped by the interdisciplinary synergy of art, knowledge and education. It is possible to extend one’s own specific knowledge of certain areas of interest for the future completion of a doctorate or habilitation in either musicology or music education.

  • Department of Drama
    The drama course aims to give young, outstandingly talented actors the opportunity to develop the practical skills need for professional theatrical performance. Special importance is attached to ensemble work, personal creativity and independence while maintaining awareness of the actor’s social responsibility.
    Over the 40 plus years of its existence, the dramatic training offered in Rostock has developed its own profile, based on the traditions of German and European theatre. The courses endeavours to link training and professional practice as closely as possible while incorporating the experience gained from international developments in the theatrical arts.

Promotion of musically gifted children

The "Young Academy Rostock" (YARO) is the international center for musically gifted children at the hmt and promotes from an early age. Please find more information on the YARO website.

hmt-Logo Animation

audio production: Derik Listemann in collaboration with Prof. Benjamin Köthe
graphic: Werk3
violin: Katja Wieck/speaker: Heisam Abbas

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