A QAIS jazz session with musician and composer Michael Zsoldos与音乐作曲家Michael Zsoldos的QAIS爵士盛会

A QAIS jazz session with musician and composer Michael Zsoldos与音乐作曲家Michael Zsoldos的QAIS爵士盛会

At QAIS we talk about language a lot. As a multi-lingual community, we are all constantly working to communicate, deepen understanding and make connections with each other. It came to my attention this week that our students have another significant “language” connection to each other and to the world; the language of music. This should come as no surprise as music is a regular part of every QAIS student’s life, however, a conversation with the 4th grade about jazz was a reminder of how vital this type of communicating is. 

As part of their I.B. unit of inquiry on exploration and innovation, the grade 4 class has been diving into a range of experiences; from curating living museums, interviewing mountaineers who explore the highest places in the world, to engaging in research projects on some of the great jazz “explorers” of the 20th century. The connection to music and band class was a natural and exciting way to support their learning and so we dove into the blues, improvisation, learning riff-based music, and listening to each other share our own created musical ideas. 

To support this learning, we had the unique opportunity to speak with an extended member of our global musical community, multi-instrumentalist, jazz musician, educator and composer Michael Zsoldos. Michael is a long-time friend mine and we asked him if he would be able to have a skype “jam session” with the 4th grade so they could listen first-hand to a musician communicating the language of jazz and also ask some of the many questions that arose during their research projects.  

Our conversation ranged from how musicians tell stories with their improvised musical lines to instrumental techniques that jazz musicians use to create a unique “voice”, to storytelling about the many musicians and experiences that Michael has had in his career. There were many “wow!” moments and looks of wonder on the students faces as they listened to his playing, but our conversation was rich with ideas, inspiration, and exploration of this unique musical form.  

Michael regularly reminded them that they had the ability to play this great music within them, about the power of audiation or hearing music in their heads. He spoke about the intense joy he felt as a child, “tinkering” and figuring music out on his instruments and trying to recreate the music that inspired him. One of his parting words to the 4th grade was that anything worth doing takes time, that to create one transcendent piece of music would be a valuable life’s work. From a lifetime explorer of the language of music, this was a valuable take-away to never stop questioning, thinking, trying new things and to never stop exploring your passions. 


在QAIS我们经常讨论关于语言的话题。作为一个多语言的团体,我们一直致力于良好的沟通,加深理解,建立彼此友好的关系。本周我们却发现,孩子们还可以用另外一种特殊的“语言”,引起彼此乃至与世界的共鸣,那就是音乐。对于QAIS的学生来说,音乐已经成为他们生命的一部分。然而,与四年级学生就音乐畅谈一番后,让我们再次的意识到,音乐在跨文化交流中的重要意义

作为IB探索与创新单元的一部分,四年级学生全身心投入到各种各样的体验中:策划并成立生态博物馆,采访世界最高峰的登山探险者,参与调查关于20世纪伟大爵士“探索家”的项目。对于学生来说,结合音乐,寓教于乐是一种轻松并快乐的学习方式。所以,他们潜心研究爵士,喜欢上即兴演奏,学习不同的音乐风格,相互分享音乐创作的灵感。

为了更好地学习音乐,学校为我们提供了一次和音乐大咖Michael Zsoldos独特的交流机会。Michael Zsoldos是全球著名的音乐人,会演奏多种乐器,是爵士乐的作曲家和教育家。Michael一直是我们的朋友,我们邀请他跟学生们来一次通过视频交流互动的音乐演奏。这样学生就可以直接听到音乐家的作品,一起交流爵士这门音乐语言,讨论一些他们在研究项目中遇到的问题。

大家在一起讨论,音乐家如何用他们即兴创作的音乐来讲述故事,爵士音乐家创造独特“声音”的器乐技巧,还有Michael在他一生的经历和结识过的音乐家。交谈中,孩子们的眼睛里充满了好奇,并时不时的传来惊讶的赞叹声。同时交流中也充满了灵感,鼓励,和对这种独特音乐形式的探索。

Michael总是提醒学生们,他们也能演奏出这样美妙的音乐。时刻让学生们记住,聆听音乐所带给他们的力量。他还跟学生们讲述了,在他孩童时期,从一个门外汉到试着用乐器演奏,再到试着重新创作那些激发他灵感音乐,这一切都带给他无限的快乐。最后他对四年级学生们说,任何值得做的事都需要时间,创造一段不凡的音乐将是一项有价值的毕生的事业。正如这个音乐的终身探索者所说,探索音乐是很有价值的事情,永远不要停止质疑、思考、尝试新事物,永远不要停止探索你对音乐的激情。

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