By Julia Kossuth
One of my favorite aspects of working at the Studios of Sarah Strout is the wealth of talent and knowledge that all the teachers possess! What a fantastic resource from which to draw players for gigs, information about events, and exchange teaching experiences and tips. Another wonderful opportunity our studio presents is the chance to collaborate with other teachers! This is so important for students to hear as well as the musical atmosphere of a studio to thrive.
Playing music with other musicians enhances each participant’s personal connections throughout the studio. Not only will member likely get to know each other better, but the pure experience of making music together is enlivening both personally and as a group.
Collaborating also benefits the students who hear the music. Kids and adults alike need to see possibilities of where they could be, should they continue playing their instrument. It also gives them a peek into what their instructor can do and enjoys doing.
Finally, playing in small ensembles of any kind lets the teacher participating pull back from the up-close perspective of teaching and find refreshment in playing, or singing, like we’re all trained to do. I personally often find myself in a better mindset to teach after I’ve played with other musicians. Not only do other perspectives add to my arsenal of approaches to each student, but I’m also more creative as I look at each student’s individual situation. Often I am able to more quickly find solutions and effective explanations for each student.
The ultimate goal of any musical instruction is to make music. To stir the soul and enrich the life of performer and listener alike. Collaborating with other people is a fantastic way to further these goals! Do you collaborate with fellow teachers or musicians in your area? What has your experience been in doing so?