MDW – University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna

View of the public hall of the Schlosstheater Schönbrunn © mdw/Martin Moravek/Martin Moravek

The mdw – University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna is one of the world‘s largest, oldest, and best known universities in the performing arts of music, theatre and film. A charity concert given by noble society ladies in 1812 led to the foundation of a "Society of the Friends of Music" with the goal of promoting music in society. Finally, the "Konservatorium der Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde" was founded in 1817. In 1851 the institution was turned into a government-supported conservatory and finally in 1998 was granted the status of a university. The university offers an outstanding education in one of the most beautiful cities in the world – Vienna – with curricula ranging from instrumental studies, voice and voice performance, to acting in the Max Reinhardt Seminar, the Film Academy Vienna, music education and research areas.

Faculties and programmes

Composition and Music Theory | Conducting | Tonmeister Education |Keyboard Instruments | Bowed Instruments and Other String Instruments |Wind and Percussion Instruments | Chamber Music | Church Music |Voice and Musical Theatre Direction | Music Therapy | Drama Programme |Film & Television | Music Education | Instrumental Music Education |Instrumental (Voice) Education | Music and Movement Education |Doctoral Degree Programme


The mdw – University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, with its over 3,000 students from around 70 countries, is one of the world’s most renowned arts universities in the fields of music, performing arts, and music education. Students can choose from 115 artistic, research-oriented, and education related programmes of study offered by a total of 25 departments at the mdw’s nine locations around the city of Vienna. And with over 1,000 university events annually, the students have abundant opportunities to gather performing experience while also ensuring the institution’s openness to a broad swath of the general public. Among those events are numerous concerts in the university’s own concert halls, which combine historical styles with state-of-the-art acoustics, opera performances and theatre performances in Vienna’s oldest baroque theatre, the Schlosstheater Schönbrunn, owned by the university, church concerts in the 17th century church of St. Ursula, film festivals, symposiums, exhibitions and interdisciplinary events.