Sound Design

The programme gives you a solid foundation in sound design, which is used in many fields of the performing arts. At SADA this includes courses in sound engineering, dramaturgy, harmony theory, electro-acoustic music composition and play analysis. You will create the sound for several student productions in collaboration with students from other SADA programmes. The programme also includes elements of sound art and a look into the use of sound in other art forms.

How to apply to Sound Design

Number of students: 4

Our bachelor degree programmes are open for admissions every two years.

Working as a sound designer

From the beginning sound design only existed as a concept on the great musical stages of Broadway or the West End. Now an exciting new group of sound designers is beginning to emerge, those who create sound design consisting of music and sound.

A sound designer working in the performing arts create sound for theatre productions, dance performances, musical or other theatrical works. He or she must also take into account the space and the set design in order to best position the speakers and other sound sources. Sometimes sound designers work closely with composers or musicians and singers.

A sound designer works with everything from spoken theatre productions in large and small venues, to dance performances and various theatrical projects. She or he uses sound effects, soundscapes and music in the theatrical work. But sound design can also consist of complicated speaker rigs and a large amount of miniature microphones for a musical. Then the sound, or the musical mix, becomes central.


The course is aimed at those who want to work with sound in the performing arts. To do this, for example, you will learn how to:

  • create sound
  • follow the sound chain through a sound system
  • connect and work with all the components of a sound chain
  • use the computer programs Pro Tools, Qlab and Ableton Live
  • build simple electronic applications
  • interpret a script or theatrical process and create a sound design for them
  • work in a team
  • present your ideas to a group

The programme gives you a solid foundation in sound engineering, basic dramaturgy and play analysis. You will create the sound for several student productions with students from other programmes. Orientation courses in music and composition are included, but you will not become a composer or musician. We work in teams where the artistic work is part of the whole. The programme also includes elements of sound art, and we take a look into the use of sound in other art forms.

Through discussions, tutorials and presentations, first in small groups and then larger ones, you will train to be a daring and independent artist. Your own studies are also strengthened through meetings with other students. Practice is an important element of the programme.

The goal is for students to be able to create sound design, both technically and artistically, for theatre productions. The course will equip you to deal with different types of art performances, giving you contact with actors, dancers, musicians, musical artists and others. Therefore, we stress teamwork throughout the programme.

After completing your training, you will be able to create sound for the performing arts at either a theatre or in some other theatrical context.

Course content

Examples of programme content:

  • Sound engineering
  • Sound design
  • Team exercises in which you will be the sound designer
  • Free artistic team exercises
  • Orientation courses in music
  • Dramaturgy
  • Play analysis
  • Harmony theory, incl. composition exercises adapted to your ability
  • Sound art and electro-acoustic music

Useful prior knowledge

It is an advantage if you have previous experience of working with theatre or other performing arts. Experience of working with sound engineering and sound design is also good, as is a musical background.

Language of instruction


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Sound Design

Bachelor programme, 180 Credits
6 terms of full-time study

Starts: Autumn term 2016

Application: 2 November 2015 - 11 January 2016

More about the education

Sound design is a three-year bachelor´s degree as part of the Image, sound and space for stage, film and media programme.

Programme appendix


Anders Aare

Senior Lecturer of Sound Design

Anders Aare attended the University College of Film, Radio, Television and Theatre’s (Dramatiska institutet) theatre technician programme from 1987 to 1989. After completing his studies he started working as sound engineer at Stockholm City Theatre. In 1990 he became the sound manager at China Theatre in Stockholm. Anders has also done freelance productions, summer theatres, and worked as a sound engineer at TV4. In 1998 he was employed as a teacher at the University College of Film, Radio, Television and Theatre. Anders Aare has written the book Sound design for the stage, Liber 2009.