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About the College

Georg Ots Tallinn Music College

The foundation for Estonia’s professional art and music education was laid 100 years ago. Three important establishments started their work in 1919: Higher Art School Pallas, Tartu Higher Music School and Tallinn Higher Music School. The idea to create a music school in Tallinn came from August Topman and Mihkel Lüdig, who had graduated from Saint Petersburg conservatory as organists. Supporters were found in the spring of 1918 in the form of the Estonia Society and the Estonia Music Society. Raimund Kull, the chief conductor of the Estonian National Opera, was another musician on the foundation committee of the school and its board. The opening ceremony of the newly founded Tallinn Higher Music School took place in Estonia Concert Hall on 28 September 1919. The teaching began in the premises of Estonia, the nearby Bank of Estonia and Lender Gymnasium; private lessons were conducted in the teachers’ homes.

Georg Ots Tallinn Music College is an Estonian national vocational college that has grown up from the Tallinn Higher Music School, founded in 1919. Since 1975 the College bears the name of legendary Estonian singer Georg Ots. In 2019 the school celebrated its 100th anniversary. Internationally and locally renowned musicians of Estonian classical, contemporary and rhythmic music like Arvo Pärt, Veljo Tormis, Erkki-Sven Tüür, Neeme Järvi, Eri Klas, Olav Ehala, Jaak Joala, Sven Grünberg, Raivo Tafenau and others have graduated from the Georg Ots Tallinn Music College.

When originally the college was engaged only in classical music, then in 1977 popular music, currently rhythmical music specialties were opened both for singers and instrumentalists on the initiative of Uno Naissoo. Nowadays, cooperation between the directions of classical and rhythmical music, integration between different curricula and great training opportunities in co-operation with concert organisations and foreign partners make the college unique.

The school’s student concerts take place regularly in the Estonia Concert Hall, House of the Brotherhood of Black Heads, Glass Hall of the Song Festival Grounds, Meder Hall, St John’s Church and the Church of the Holy Spirit. Our students have participated in musicals and theatrical evenings in Tallinn City Hall, Estonia Winter Garden, etc. Georg Ots Tallinn Music College has been a breeding ground for the most important Estonian music institutions: our alumni work in orchestras, music theatres, professional choirs, music journalism, radio, television, and as teachers at music schools. Many of Estonia’s most renowned singers, instrumentalists, conductors, composers and jazz musicians have come from the Georg Ots Tallinn Music College. The school provides vocational music and general education in secondary and upper secondary level. Music and performing arts curricula are divided into two areas — classical and rhythmic (pop/jazz) department. Classical study includes programs for all classical string and wind instruments, percussion, piano, harpsichord, organ, guitar, accordion, singing, music theory, piano maintenance, composition and choir conducting courses. The pop/jazz department covers both, singing and instrument curricula.

The high-quality musical results of the studies are integrated into the public music life in cooperation with professional concert organizations and employers (Estonian Concert, National Opera, National Broadcasting) and festival organizers (Jazzkaar, Saaremaa Opera Days, etc.). Graduates of the college usually enter into higher education institutions and music universities in Estonia and abroad. They have become successful creative musicians (soloists or players in various orchestras and ensembles; or singers, conductors and music producers).

The school’s management and teachers are active developers in the field of Estonian and international music, as well as renowned performers and visionary educators. Currently there are 138 teachers working at the College. Most of them are active musicians and music professionals. Members of the staff have participated in international projects. Our students start at age 16, and the number of students is almost 300.

Georg Ots Tallinn Music College invites students to study at the following curricula:

1 The musician’s curriculum has the following disciplines: accordion / kannel, strings, classical song, piano, organ, harpsichord, percussion and wind instruments

2 The rhythm musician’s curriculum consists of rhythm music singing and rhythm music instruments


You can enrol after acquiring basic or secondary education:
• Vocational education after secondary education (study period 3 years).
• Vocational education after basic education (study period 3 years, general subjects acquired in another
general education school).
• Vocational secondary education after basic education (study period 4 years, general subjects acquired at Georg Ots College).
The language of instruction is Estonian.

(vocational education in basic and secondary school)
• Preliminary education is designed for achieving the entry level for main education.
• It allows the students to adapt to the demands of the College and its environment.
• The student must participate in specialty and solfeggio classes; if possible, also in ensembles and orchestras.
• Preliminary education is recommended for anyone who wants to improve themselves for enrolling in main education or who have a gap in their music studies.

• Continuing education is intended for individuals who have Musician Level 4 or equivalent competencies and who wish to acquire a basic knowledge of instrument teaching and to develop their performing skills in order to become an instructor in Instructor Studies or to continue their studies in Performance Instruction at higher education level.
• People who work at music hobby schools and other instructors of instrumental studies who want to improve their performance and teaching methods


Together with the College, a total of 19 partner schools from twelve different European countries are involved: schools from Latvia, Lithuania, Finland, Sweden, Ireland, Great Britain, Portugal, Italy, Spain, Turkey and Germany.

Projects supported by the European Union’s Erasmus + Program for Education, Training, Youth and Sport are taking place at the Georg Ots Tallinn Music College during the 2021/2021 academic year.

Erasmus+ learning mobility project:

„Bridges of Music”
The aim of the project is to provide students in the field of music education in vocational education with professional international practice and enable educators to improve their skills, promoting innovation in music education.
ART’J – escola profissional de artes performativas da Jobra (Portugal)
Conservatório de Música Calouste Gulbenkian de Braga (Portugal)
Escola Profissional das Artes da Madeira, Eng.º Luiz Peter Clode (Portugal)
Escola Profissional Artística do Alto Minho (Portugal)
Kauno Juozo Gruodžio konservatorija (Leedu)
Kuopion konservatorio (Soome)
Musikgymnasium Schloss Belvedere Weimar (Saksamaa)
Profesionālās izglītības kompetences centrs “Nacionālā Mākslu vidusskola” (Läti)
Skurups folkhögskola (Rootsi)

Erasmus+ strategic partnership:

“Building Culture Across Borders” (BCAB)
The objective of the project “Building Culture Across Borders” is to broaden the opportunities for collaboration between educational institutions and the cultural sector by
combing different creative fields and creating new forms of expression that support the modernization of music education and promote creativity outside the usual environment.

Escola Artística do Conservatório de Música Calouste Gulbenkian de Braga (Portugal)
Georg Otsa nimeline Tallinna Muusikakool (Estonia)
Vaskjala Loomeresidentuur, Rae kultuurikeskus (Estonia)
Eurelations GEIE (Italy)

“Changing to democracy”
The project aims to raise awareness of shared European values and the EU as an institution that preserves peace and protects citizens’ individual freedoms.
Regiomontanus-Gymnasium Haßfurt (Germany)
Liceul Pedagogic “Regele Ferdinand” (Romania)
Secondary School Damião de Goes (Portugal)
Yerevan High School (Armenia)

“Cinema for inclusion”
In the course of the project, a documentary film on social inclusion will be produced in cooperation with the project partners.
IES Batalla de Clavijo (Spain)
I.I.S.S. — Upper Secondary Education Institute “Luigi Vanvitelli” (Italy)
Manavgat SuleMuzaffer Büyük Vocational and Technical High School (Turkey)

“Wind Rose Festival: finding our way through the arts”
The aim of the project is to share good practice between partner schools in order to better integrate performing arts students into the professional context.
ART’J – escola profissional de artes performativas da Jobra (Portugal)
Kainuun ammattiopisto (Finland)
Liceo Artistico Musicale “A. Passaglia” (Italy)