Traditional notation is taught and technical brilliance embraced, yet we also seek to enhance the skills of every child through the power of expression. We encourage our young people not only to perform ‘the dots,’ as my students commonly call musical notes, but to feel emotional resonance with the music. Through experimentation with musical elements, inspiration from outstanding composers and breathtaking performances by Juilliard artist visits, we help our children to discover and nurture their own creative interpretations. For a child to grow holistically - not only as a musician, but as a whole person – we encourage self-expression and open-mindedness in everything they do.
The impact of this is evident every day, as questions and answers from students gain depth of understanding and curiosity. “Please can we listen to Beethoven again today?” (Jules, Age 6) pleading at the start of a lesson, “I can hear the bassoon, like in the Rite of Spring!” (Immie, Age 7) when listening to Mozart’s ‘Magic Flute’, “Please can I change the timbre to make it more expressive?” (Sebastien, Age 7) (yes, he actually used the word timbre, correctly, in context!), “I like practicing because I can play things better and it makes me feel proud of myself” (Harry, Age 8) and ‘I LOVE Stravinsky” (Audrey, Age 5). These magic moments are increasing in frequency, not only at Nord Anglia International School Hong Kong but in Nord Anglia schools around the world.