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.
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。