In the autumn of 1891 Sibelius started to earn money in Loviisa. He gave violin lessons and taught music theory while he was composing Kullervo. However, his income from teaching was very small.
Sibelius's newspaper advertisement
A year later Sibelius had two jobs. During the school year 1892-93 he taught music theory and violin playing at Wegelius's Music Institute and at Kajanus's Orchestral School.
Sibelius's annual income at the Music Institute (1892-93) was 772.50 marks or 2,596.65 euros. It was barely enough to pay the rent for the family's residence.
Sibelius was poorly paid. Although he sometimes worked over 30 hours per week at two different institutes, he did no more than cover the family's living expenses.
In this context it may be mentioned that Wegelius himself had a monthly salary of 500 marks (1,630 euros) at his Music Institute. This was further increased by various allowances. Robert Kajanus had a monthly salary of 600 marks (over 2,000 euros in today's money) in addition to his other income.
In 1893-94 Sibelius's monthly income at the orchestra school of the Orchestra Society amounted to 200 marks (690 euros in today's money). There was no pay for the summer months.
It is not surprising that Sibelius's active career as a teacher only lasted a few years. He could make more money by composing and giving concerts. Sibelius's name remained on the list of teachers until the year 1902, but with the exception of a few short locum posts at the university he maintained his family on his earnings as a freelance composer.