Rajasthan, steeped in legend, home of mighty warriors, has a vibrant musical culture. Our first stop was Ajmer. Known for its excellent schools, the city’s music teachers had much to share with us. It was not all work, however, with an impromptu singalong adding an element of fun to the session. Truly, an expression of the joy of making music as a close-knit community!
A short train ride away, Jaipur awaited. While we had much to marvel at in the splendid Pink City, we had much to listen to from the city’s musicians, who put forward their views and news in our lively session.
Our whirlwind tour continued southward to some of the largest centres in India. Quality time was spent meeting and interacting with teachers. In this leg, we began with Bangalore, a city where music of all kinds finds appreciative audiences. Bangalore teachers demonstrated that they are an integral part of this lively scene!
On to Coimbatore where we talked, discussed, heard many points of view—and listened with great pleasure to some impromptu ensemble playing from the hugely talented and dedicated teachers.
Next stop, Chennai, home of legendary classical and contemporary musicians. Needless to say, our meeting with teachers yielded valuable and thought-provoking ideas to take back.
Our next meeting took place in the royal setting of Hyderabad, home of the Nizams. Our welcome, from hosts and teachers, was also a truly royal one of warmth and hospitality. The questions and ideas that were bowled to us at lightning speed ranged from yorkers to fast balls to tricky spins. A truly exhilarating encounter!
Leaving the South behind with great regret we flew north to land in the verdant Doon valley, nestled in the lap of the Himalayas. In this town of great schools, on day 1 we visited Hopetown Girl’s School and Unison World School to introduce teachers to the Trinity programme. On day 2 we were delighted to meet teachers from the schools in the Doon valley as well as private teachers and hear about their dynamic music education programmes whilst providing the latest updates from Trinity College London. The future of music performance is certainly in very capable hands, and fuelled by passion and commitment.
Back home, bags unpacked, and ready to be packed again!
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