Traditional and Folk Music

Coordinator of Studies, Lecturer Katariin Raska

The traditional music major offers numerous options to study the historical styles of playing an instrument and singing, and to develop practical playing skills.

As traditional music is one of the pillars of Estonia’s national cultural identity, the curriculum focuses on research and teaching subjects related to Estonian traditional music. The curriculum also contains introductory courses on other countries and nationalities.

The curriculum was established by maestro Veljo Tormis, who was an expert in Estonian runo songs. Teachers of the traditional music curriculum are experts and enthusiasts in their field: Tuulikki Bartosik, Katariin Raska, Robert Jürjendal and Žanna Pärtlas.

Within the curriculum, it is possible to study traditional music, do fieldwork, study different performance styles both in practice and theory, and through new arrangements and developments to bring new life to important cultural texts that are fading.

Students have good opportunities to collaborate with students specialising in other musical styles. Joint projects have occurred with students of jazz and improvisation. Students participate in the NordTrad conference, an international traditional music event that provides them with further opportunities to communicate with students from other Nordic and Baltic music universities. The students describe this as an experience that broadens their horizons and see the conference as an inexhaustible source of musical ideas.