Impressions from India

“Start-up Bangalore” Exchange Project, February 2015

Zurich University of the Arts – Bangalore School of Music

“The teaching exchange with the Bangalore School Of Music was a very broadening and inspiring experience.The cultural differences between India and Switzerland taught me once more that there is no right or wrong way of teaching. Teaching is always about truly seeing who is in front of you, what this person might need and therefore act in a corresponding way. This can only be achieved when we have the openness to always try new and different approaches of teaching. I am very grateful to have been given the opportunity to work with all the passionate students at BSM.”

– Jasmin Andergassen, Department Music and Movement – Voice and Stage Performance

“During my stay in Bangalore, I was teaching voice to open minded and interested students (aged 6-60). Because our instrument is so strongly connected to the body, I offered a lot of body action in my lessons. It took not long until the students realised that the voice took benefit from a warmed up body. The students’ smiling faces proved to me that our common research for a free and healthy sound production was not theoretical but experienced by each of the students. The stay in India confirmed me in my profession as a vocal pedagogue because the students’ progress were straight away visible and of course hearable! Besides that, I have met a lot of nice people and experienced a wonderful culture, foods and customs. I hope to be back very soon!”

– Reto Knöpfel, Department Music Pedagogy – Voice

“India, the far away land full of colours, funny slogans and astonishing mixture of different religions, cultural backgrounds and extreme contrasts in the society, truly amazed me since our very first day in Bangalore. This project was one of the most important experiences I’ve had. First of all, for me as a person and then as a guitar teacher, artist and performer. Teaching at Bangalore School of Music was indeed challenging and at the same time easy and enjoyable. As I didn’t have many information about the students, upon arriving to the school the challenging part began. I was working with students in individual and in group lessons, coaching BSM guitar faculty and discussing about the educational system at the school. With the students I was mostly focusing on something very essential and fundamental in music such as imagination and the way of expression while playing an instrument. The goal was to support the development of one’s individuality and help in forming the critical opinion about the music. Joy and the Move in both sides was quickly visible which motivated us to continue to enjoy sharing the knowledge and experiences about the music. This was a very emotional and motivating project for all of us I am looking to come back to Bangalore and continue this wonderful collaboration!”

– Luka Stamenkovic, Department Music Pedagogy – 13string guitar

“It has been a very emotional week and a wonderful experience of the different culture here. It is amazing to see so many children interested in the Western European classical music. They also taught us about the traditional music here. It was exciting since we don’t have a one-way teacher-student relationship. We both have a learning exchange. It is a good thing to exchange musical knowledge. This also inspires others. We want to come back soon to see what work we can do further and learn.”

– Ivan Turkalj, Department Music Pedagogy – Violoncello