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Sound studies


The goal of the program is to give a broad theoretical basis that allows one to reflect on sound from the point of view of aesthetic, philosophical and social disciplines; familiarize students with the history of the development of music and sound art; to teach students the professional use of technical tools for working with sound; create prerequisites for the development and implementation of new ideas in art and science; to form a community of creative people.

Terms and price of the training:
2 years (4 terms)
215 000 rub per year
Training start: October 1, 2019.
Application deadline: May 1st to August 19th, 2019.

Interview with program supervisors Roman Kurochkin and Alena Melnikova about the program


During the last hundred years, under the influence of innovative ideas in the field of musical composition, active development of technical tools, and in-depth theoretical and practical activities of representatives of various branches of science and art, a new attitude to sound as a universal plastic language with a huge expressive potential has been formed. The appearance of sound recordings opened up new possibilities for perceiving the world around us, and created a powerful impact on the development of new types of art and technology.

The Master’s program “Study of Sound” includes a set of disciplines related to sound, and is based on the study of the theoretical base, on practical research and creative activity in the field of audial culture.

Who it is for

This is a program for those who want to:

  • Connect their life with the field of sound culture and art
  • • Gain practical skills and theoretical background necessary to work with sound arts
  • Reach a new level of professional development in their field, having received a fundamental and holistic humanitarian education
  • Be in the center of the intellectual events of the city


The educational process is based on four main areas: theory, practice, perception and project work. These basic directions alongside special topics, seminars and practice are designed to form a unique vision along with a strong technical base for further work with sound.

I Theory.

Theoretical and scientific knowledge of audio art and culture, especially with regard to methods of cultural studies, musicology, the theory of art, design, media and communication theory, as well as philosophy and sociology.

II Practice.

Techniques and methods of artistic creativity in the field of sound, including concept, implementation and documentation. Types and history of sound synthesis, physical and technological properties of sound signals, as well as their recording and technical processing.

III Perception.

Development of musical and technical hearing skills, transfer of methods of musical notation and sound events analysis; the progression of sound over time, the basics of architectural acoustics, psychoacoustics, phenomenology and aesthetics.

IV Project work.

The project work will include essays, critical texts aimed at ideas about sound in art, and practical work with sound illustrating these ideas. Students will be asked to perform both individual and group work.


At the end of the program, the graduate receives a Master’s diploma in “Management in culture and arts”, as well as a diploma of advanced training course in «Sound studies».


1st term

  • History of European philosophy
  • History of European literature
  • Introduction to the history of arts
  • Introduction to psychoanalysis (Sosland Alexander)
  • Cultural studies (Kirill Kobrin)
  • Organization of museum spaces (optional)
  • Publishing basics (optional)
  • English

2nd term

  • Philosophy of the XX and XXI centuries (Elena Petrovskaya)
  • The latest trends in philosophy
  • The history of the culture of the new time (Oleg Aronson)
  • Digital marketing in art and culture
  • HR-management
  • Russian literature
  • Socio-cultural design (optional)
  • Entrepreneurship in the cultural field (optional)

3rd term

  • Contemporary art theories (Stepan Vaneyan)
  • Psychosemiotics (Marina Novikova-Grund)
  • Project management in culture
  • Basics of PR in culture /li>
  • Optional second foreign language
  • Arts history and psychoanalysis

Specialty courses on sound studies (1st-3rd term)

  • Fundamental course in the history of music and musical ethnography
  • Music theory
  • Musical aesthetics
  • History of sound in art
  • Basics of sound recording and audio processing
  • Sound engineering basics
  • Sound in space
  • Sound synthesis practice and sound-design
  • Psychology of sound
  • Creative statement
  • Audio perception
  • Author’s original courses
  • Thematic workshops

Research seminars

  • History and theory of everyday life
  • Memory studies
  • Basic concepts of critical theory (Ilya Budraitskis)
  • Postcolonial theory (Madina Tlostanova)
  • Gender studies (Irina Zherebkina)

Practice, internships, field trips

Practical immersion of students in the professional field occurs in stages:

1st year of studies:

1st term — weekly seminars where an intensive study of critical theory with leading theorists in the field of culture and art takes place

2nd term — internships in partner organizations: Stanislavsky Electrotheatre, Moscow School of New Cinema, SHAR School of Animation Film

June — visiting sessions in St. Petersburg and visiting museums under the supervision of teachers of the European University; practical seminars related to the museum life of Moscow

2nd year of studies:

3rd term — internships in partner organizations

4th term — work on your own project

Special programs

  • Theme workshops
  • “Field studies” and workshops following these studies
  • “Orphic Games” at the Stanislavsky Electrotheatre

Program benefits

  • Studies of culture and human experience in the context of sound.
  • Acquiring basic professional skills in technical work with sound.
  • Poetic and analytical immersion into the world of sound and its natural states.
  • Practical and theoretical studies for a deeper understanding of the nature of sound and its cultural context.

Recommended literature

A list of books, which will help you get acquainted with sound studies, can be found here

Educational environment and events

This is the periphery, which turns into an energy center of the educational process, because it is here that freedom is possible, which is necessary for the intellectual and creative transformation of reality.

Original author’s courses:

  • Music theory. Music criticism (Vladimir Martynov)
  • History of philosophy of technology. China (Vladimir Malyavin)
  • Language of eyesight (Artur Aristakisyan)
  • Theatre. Language (Anatoliy Vasilyev)
  • Anthropology of death (Sergey Mohov)
  • Autobiography (Valeriy Podoroga)
  • Research of science and technology (Denis Sivkov)
  • Color symbolism from antiquities to the XX century
  • Antiquity and modern popular culture
  • History of physicality and sexuality


  • Laboratory of Lacanian psychoanalysis
  • Open translation laboratory
  • Interdisciplinary laboratory for the study of communication problems within the semiotic approach

Art projects:

  • «Collective norm» — an online project dedicated to Vladimir Sorokin’s “Norm” novel and timed to his lecture, held at our University
  • «In search of Hamlet» — a project to create costumes for a play; implemented together with Stanislavsky Electrotheatre
  • «The Melting Apocalypse» — an exhibition, carried out together with Stanislavsky Electrotheatre
  • «Lost & found» — an audio installation interpreting the sound space of the university


Open lectures, events, reading groups, film screenings, and performances

The current schedule can be found here


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