Music – playing in front of the PC: music students in lockdown culture

Karlsruhe (dpa) – Benjamin can save himself the trip to the music school. But that’s the only thing that the nine-year-old from Karlsruhe thinks about the situation. For months he has only met his violin teacher digitally.

“If, for example, it is a question of how to hold the fingers, he can show me. But it is not that easy to implement difficult instructions quickly,” says Benjamin.

Whether children can currently be taught in the music school and under which rules depends on the regulations of the federal states. One thing is certain: for many, lessons have mostly been digital for almost a year. “It works well when students and teachers already know each other,” says Matthias Pannes. He is the federal manager of the Association of German Music Schools.

It is currently more difficult to attract new students. The current registration numbers are not yet available. But Pannes expects a decline. Beginners lack the experience to build on. “It is simply difficult to describe the use of the instruments or to play them,” says Pannes. The head of the association sees problems with the younger children in particular. “For children who are reached in pre-school and elementary school age, learning with all the senses is simply important,” he says. Early musical education at home? Possible under certain circumstances, but not that easy.

It is all the more important to keep those who are already at it. It works quite well at the more than 900 music schools in the association, says Pannes. More than 80 percent of the parents who enrolled their children in one-to-one or partner lessons stayed with them. Often the parents have paid the tuition fees for years. Many fear that if the children stop now, they may never start again. Then time and financial effort would have been in vain.

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Motivate, persuade to practice: Even before the Corona crisis, this was often everyday life for many parents with children making music. But now they often play an even greater role. This is also the case with Benjamin from Karlsruhe. He doesn’t have a problem with motivation. Nevertheless, he is happy that his mother also plays the violin and can sometimes help him. “For example when my violin has to be tuned,” he explains.

“Nothing works without parents,” says Sarah Leuchter. The mother from Cologne registered her five-year-old daughter for early musical education a few months ago. She is always there with digital lessons. If the teacher sings something on the screen, parents and children on the other side mute their microphones and each sing along for themselves. “Of course, it is not really working together. But it is better than nothing,” says Sarah Leuchter.

“Having a structure in the day and regular and creative activity are particularly beneficial for children and young people at these times,” says Pannes. How motivated and consistent the children are, depends above all on the situation of their families, says Pannes. “How are the days in the families organized? How burdened are the parents with their work? What worries might there be in the crisis?” He would like music schools and schools to be treated equally when it comes to openings. “Education is more than school,” he says.

© dpa-infocom, dpa: 210408-99-122561 / 3

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