University course - Wind Band Conducting

University course
Abschlusskonzert Blasorchesterleitung 2021

Since March 2019, the Mozarteum University has been offering the part-time postgraduate course in wind band conducting as a continuing education program. The focus is on imparting knowledge specific to the work with wind ensembles as well as providing opportunities for practical work in this field.


University course

Due to the excellent teaching delivered by the music educational institutions in the Salzburg province and the continually improving standard of the approximately 150 brass bands in the region, the demands on the bandmasters of the Salzburg Brass Band Association are also increasing.

Therefore, the focus of this course is on conducting lessons (individual and group lessons), in which both artistic skills and conducting skills (including repetiteur training and orchestral exercises) are developed. The diverse repertoire covered by the course ranges from the  traditional to the symphonic, with the difficulty level of the repertoire being oriented towards the standard of playing which the participants expect to encounter later in their artistic practice.

Teaching content related to the band leader role is woven into the course. Areas covered include arrangement and transcription skills, analysis of repertoire and the methodology/didactics of wind band conducting. Exercises in harmony, composition and ear training are also covered by the course.

The course is rounded off with the option to observe one-to-one teaching at the Mozarteum University in all instruments of the wind orchestra, with teaching content from the field of jazz/pop and percussion being offered as well as rhythm training and solfeggio. In addition to the lessons at the Mozarteum University Salzburg, the teaching program also takes the form of leading rehearsals at brass bands in the region as well as rehearsal sessions with the Salzburg Military Band. All practical work is undertaken in close cooperation with the Salzburg Wind Band Association.

General information

The curriculum is competence-oriented. Upon completion of the course. students should:

  • have developed and deepened their practical skills and theoretical expertise in conducting and in the musical direction of a wind band/ensemble
  • be versed in the theory and practice of interpreting repertoire in terms of technique and musical interpretation
  • have grown into the musical director role
  • be able to critically reflect on experiences and implement appropriate measures for optimisation
  • have developed and improved their experience in rehearsal methodology and didactics
  • have developed their knowledge of symphonic wind band instruments (including percussion), instrumentation, musical arrangements, transcribing and arranging, repertoire and stylistic analysis, and be able to apply this knowledge in practice.
  • have deepened their skills and knowledge in the areas of harmony, composition and ear training
  • have trained their ability to demostrate musical expression with the voice and consolidated their rhythmic-metric stability
  • have absorbed impulses from the areas of jazz and pop music and be able to incorporate what they have learned into their practical work

This course is open to all who are already a band leader or ensemble director or can prove comparable previous knowledge. It not necessary to have completed previous studies at the Mozarteum University.

A prerequisite for admission is the successful completion of the audition. An online application is required for this, during which the necessary documents will be checked. Only after all documents have been checked and approved will an invitation to audition be issued.

The course starts every two years in March (summer semester) with teaching taking place on Saturdays during the academic year. 

Documents required for online registration

  • written curriculum vitae
  • letter of motivation
  • (possibly) proof of previous education

Form of the documents

  • The documents can be uploaded as PDF files in the application form.
  • If the above-mentioned certificates and official documents are not available in German or English, an official translation must also be submitted.

The audition

If an invitation to audition is issued, an oral examination must be taken to determine artistic aptitude. This consists of three parts:

A - Interview

Interview with the audition panel on motivation, background, expectations (= personal presentation including artistic/musical career and previous conducting experience in addition to the submission of a written CV as part of the application for the audition)

B - Presentation & discussion of a wind band work of the candidate's choice.

The score must be submitted in duplicate or as a copy.

C - Conducting & Work Analysis

Conducting and work analysis of one of the following three works:

  • Gustav Holst: First Movement (March/Allegro) and Second Movement (Song/Andante) from the Second Suite in F, Edition Colin Matthews.
  • Antonin Dvořák/Arr.: Siegmund Goldhammer: Slavonic Dance No. 4, op. 46
  • Johann Strauss II/Arr. Albert Schwarzmann: Emperor Waltz

D -German language skills

  • Required language level: at least A2 (Common European Framework of Reference CEFR 2001)
  • Information on the German examination and the recognised certificates can be found HERE

Dates and procedure

  • Online registration for an audition during the application period via the registration portal for applicants
    (PLEASE NOTE: Registration is only possible after submission of all required documents!)
  • Once documents have been approved: invitation to on-site audition
  • Participation in the on-site audition in January
  • Upon passing the audition: invitation to enrol in the degree programme
  • Enrolment during the general admission period of the summer semester

Auditions are held once every two years; the course starts in the following summer semester.

Accessibility and widening participation

Please note that the Mozarteum University Salzburg offers various support options at the time of your audition and during your studies if you have a disability or a chronic illness.

If this applies to you and you would like to take advantage of counselling, please contact Claudia Haitzmann: oder +43 676 88122 337.

A course fee and the ÖH contribution (Students' Union fees) must be paid per semester for participation in the course.

Information on the current fees can be found HERE.


The course begins every two years in March (summer semester) and is held on Saturdays throughout the academic year. 

Link to curriculum

The final examination consists of an internal and an external examination part:

  • In the fourth semester, the last orchestral exercise in each case is set up as an internal examination, which, if passed, results in admission to the external final examination (rehearsals and concert).
  • Conducting a wind band piece in the graduate concert (with the Salzburg Military Band). The rehearsal work for the final concert is also included in the assessment.


  • 26.6.2024

    Our loyal alumnus, passionate musician (oboist) and pedagogue Wolfgang Billeb passed away in June 2024. In his memory, we would like to publish his memories of his studies at the Mozarteum University once again. The interview was conducted with Ilse Tiebert in 2014 on the occasion of the celebration with his fellow students to mark the 60th anniversary of his graduation from the Mozarteum in June 1954 as part of the "Narrated History" programme of the Art Archive Room.

    In memoriam
  • © Wildbild & Team
    Awarding of ensemble scholarship 

    The presentation concert of the scholarship holders of the newly created ensemble scholarship A (one-year) Start Up for Ensemble(s) took place in the impressive ambience of Schloss Leopoldskron at the beginning of April. In cooperation with "The International Society of Mozarteum University Salzburg", over 44.000 euros will be made available to students or graduates of the Mozarteum University Salzburg.

  • © Christian Schneider
    Future music from five centuries 

    With the first edition of the new interdisciplinary ORA Early Music Festival, the Mozarteum University is celebrating a special premiere. Over three days, early music, contemporary musical language and improvisation come together in numerous concerts and sound performances.



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Ion Marin und das Akademieorchester im Rahmen der Mozartwoche 2023 | © Wolfgang Lienbacher
Sinfoniekonzert Max Schlereth Saal Oktober 2023 | © Michael Klimt
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