Savonlinna Opera Festival

Chorus master

Savonlinna Opera Festival Choir is renowned for its vibrant sound, musical punch, and powerful stage presence. We are now looking for an experienced chorus master to take responsibility for the choir’s musical coaching, artistic quality, and general administration.  

The chorus master’s duties include: 

  • rehearsing the choir based on the repertoire plan, ensuring the musical side of productions and concerts is mastered before stage rehearsals in Savonlinna,  
  • monitoring and ensuring the choir’s musical proficiency over the rehearsal and performance season in Savonlinna, including collaboration with the conductors of productions,
  • administrative tasks, such as liaising with the choir members and the Opera Festival management, as well as planning and organising rehearsals, weekend workshops, and auditions, 
  • choosing the choir members according to the Opera Festival selection process, 
  • if necessary, conducting the choir in opera performances, concerts, and other performances. 

The role requires: 

  • experience in conducting an opera choir or another professional choir, as well as in an offstage conductor role,
  • knowledge of opera literature, voice and vocal technique,
  • excellent leadership skills combined with the ability to work as a team,
  • a master’s degree in Music or a similar relevant education or experience,
  • exemplary interaction skills and a flair for planning and organisation,
  • a fluent command of written and spoken English and a sound grasp of Italian, German and French. Fluency in Finnish or an interest in studying Finnish is considered an advantage,
  • good piano skills are also valued.

In return, we offer a challenging artistic role of high international standards in an inspiring work community, along with the chance to take part in creating a unique highlight of the Finnish summer. The fixed-term, part-time contract will begin on a date agreed in autumn 2021 and continues until the end of July 2023. 

The size of the festival choir varies yearly according to the repertoire. The standard choir size for a romantic repertoire is 80 singers. The singers are chosen for one year tenures based on auditions. 

Currently the choir’s rehearsal schedule includes 4-5 weekend rehearsal workshops in Helsinki. The duration of the festival season in Savonlinna is approximately six weeks, from mid-June to the end of July.  

Please include the appendices detailed below in your application: 

  • Cover letter (max. 1 sheet), which answers the following questions:
    How would you develop the Opera Festival Choir artistically?
    How would you organise the work of the Opera Festival Choir throughout the year?
  • A link to a video of a rehearsal or concert situation, in which you conduct a mixed choir (min. 5 minutes, for example YouTube or Vimeo). Please ensure that the hands and face of the choirmaster are visible.
  • CV and desired salary 

We look forward to receiving your application by 15 August 2021 at For more information, please contact Artistic Director Ville Matvejeff, 


Savonlinna Opera Festival is Finland’s most internationally acclaimed cultural event and a significant tourist destination. The festival is made possible by its supporters. It is backed by a non-profit patrons’ association, the membership of which is open to everyone. The festival, which attracts up to 70 000 visitors every summer, is highly self-financed: 86% of its operational costs are covered by ticket income, corporate partnerships, and donations. The vast majority of the budget, 75%, is spent on artistic and technical production work, which enables the month-long festival in the medieval castle of Olavinlinna. During the festival season up to 1200 people collaborate to create unique opera experiences.