28 May 2011

Rock Academy coming to Mitrovica - Gerdien is back!

My name is Gerdien Visser. I’m a teacher at the Rock Academy for seven years.

I’m responsible for the educational department of the Rock Academy.


This is the third time I visit Kosovo with a team of students. I’m looking forward to be back in Kosovo and meet everyone.

Maybe it’s nice to tell something about my self and what I do in my free time. I’m a mother of three children. The youngest is 16 years old, the second 18 and my eldest is 20 years old. Two of my sons play the guitar.

In my free time I like to read books, listen to music and I dance flamenco.

Rock Academy coming to Mitrovica - meet Stayf!

Stefan "Stayf" van Leijsen is a very diverse, extremely focused and hard working Dutch guy who's only 23 years old.

Currently attending the Fontys Rockacademie in Tilburg (Netherlands) where he is learning the craft of producing, composing, arraning and managing artist's careers.


Stayf has attained experience is both the musical side and the business side of the music industry and can be a very inspiring guy to talk to.

Make sure to contact him while he's visiting the Mitrovica Rock School between the 29th of May and the 5th of June 2011!

26 May 2011

Rock Academy coming to Mitrovica - meet Jos!

My name is Jos Driessen, I'm a third year student at the Rock Academy.

I've followed classes in composition and developing my own band, but my heart truly lies in engineering.

I love working in the studio, recording all kinds of music. I also have a volunteer job as a live technician at a local club, and I play guitar in Two Days Left and Dustsucker (look them up on Facebook if you like!).

I'm really looking forward to spending a week in Kosovo and getting to know new people!

The Rock School - one of my greatest experiences ever!

By Vjosa Selmani, singer

Life before the Rock School
As a little child, I grew up singing. My whole life was about music, and still is. But there was a little problem. I didn’t have a place to set my soul free, I couldn’t find a place where I simply could show my feelings through music... until summer 2008 came.



2008: First Skopje Summer School!
I became part of an unforgettable experience, it was the summer school in Skopje. I was a total amateur I never had the chance to sing live. I didn’t even knew how to use a microphone properly! But the things that I learned that week, oh I’m sure I would never learn those things in many years here. Then, the official opening of the Rock School in Mitrovica, was just the beginning of a great adventure with lots of gigs, concerts, appearances in the tv scene and a lot more...

Professional breakthrough
As the years passed by I’ve had an obvious professional breakthrough, I really learned a lot during these years in the RS and hope to be part of this experience for a long period.

25 May 2011

Rock School girl power at Video Fest

By Blerta Kosova, singer and guitarist

Video Fest
MRS students, Vjosa, Vesa and Blerta (me), had the most awesome and quite important performance on Monday the 16th. It was the glamorous night of the Video Festival that takes place yearly in Pristina since 2003.

It started with a phone call...
It all started with a phone call from Edon, our band coach and keyboards instructor. He asked if we were interested to participate in a great organization like that and we were like “whaat!?”, of course!! :)

Lookin' all glamerous
On Sunday we had general rehearsals in Pristina, the next day was the great day.
As we arrived in Pristina, on Monday, we went to the National Theatre where the whole ceremony was going to happen. We were getting ready looking all glamorous and went to the v.i.p room to watch the ceremony (hahah what a feeling).

Rockin' all-girl band
So, as the Video Fest started we were the opening performance. While Mentor (from famous “Kthjellu” band, and Yllka Kuqi (also a famous singer in Kosova) were singing the famous Beatles song, “money can’t buy me love,” I was playing the guitar, Vjosa the bass guitar and Vesa on drums.

Celebs, superstars an paparazzi
It was so great because we never got to play in front of such a “celeb-ish”(lol) audience. The great feeling even got better when we went to the after party in Duplex, we were treated like real superstars, everywhere paparazzi asking for photo shots.

It was one amaaaazing experience that I HAD to share with all my Rock School bloggers : )

18 May 2011

Music influences and inspiration

By Jelena Zafirovic, singer and guitarist

What is music?
When music is a subject, it can be discussed forever, but there are a few groups of people who take it in a different way. For artists: music is the way to express feelings, ideas, to make contact with all the people, to try changing the world.

For the audience: music is a chance to relax, or have fun, or to remember good, or bad times in their lives. For the people who wish to be famous at all costs: music means nothing. But it is very important for everyone to know how to recognize every type.

Why prejudice?
Unfortunately, there are many people full of prejudice in music. Why every musician and every fan needs a tag? Why is Metallica’s music just annoying noise? Why is Shakira a girl that moves her hips? Why is Britney Spears an untalented celebrity who became famous over night?

First that everybody needs to understand is: you can’t become famous over night, and every artist that is one of the most popular in the world had to work hard every since childhood to gain respect from the world. The point here is not to defend any of the artists with “tags”, but to prove that: the more styles you respect and follow – the more creative you become.

My advice
Some people asked me how am I able to write so many songs with different subjects, how do I get inspired. My answer is: follow where the music is going to, listen to every type of music, every style, and then you’ll know, when you hear a bad song with very low quality, you’ll say “I’ll be better than this and I’ll bring real music to the people” and when you hear a good song, with high quality, you’ll get inspired and create more and more every day.

And then you’ll understand: it doesn’t matter is it rock, pop, jazz, or house, what matters is GOOD MUSIC. And it’s also very important to have good people to support you and to work with you, like I do in Mitrovica Rock School.