21 November 2013

Ambassador Band Tour Week, November 17-24, Skopje

As the week progresses students are quickly becoming attuned to playing in their new bands after a two-months interlude and, moreover, they are each creating a new song to add to their already prolific creative run after Skopje Band Camp in August. Their teachers are very optimistic at the rate at which bands impove daily and will make sure they are ready for the concerts.

The Skopje two legs of the Ambassador Band Tour which culminates in Berlin in Spring 2014 are very special for the two Mitrovica Rock School bands, Sublime 5 and The Artchitects, as it is here that most of the songs have been written and first live performances took place, as well as first studio recordings were made.

First Skopje tour leg is a an acoustic live session at Bravo bar on Thursday night where bands will strum out unplugged and downtempo renditions of their mainly fast and energetic rock and roll originals.

Students practice for concerts

The second, concluding concert of the Skopje tour is on Saturday, November 23rd in Club Havana, the hottest gig venue in the town where bands will present themselves to the Skopje crowd and Mitrovica supporters with new original songs and a feat of advanced stage performing.

Catch you there,


Ambassador Band Tour - Skopje November, 2013

On November 17 to 24, third tier of the Ambassador Band Program gets underway. Sublime 6, runner-up of the Band Contest in August, team up with The Artchitects to tour Skopje and play two capital’s hottest concert clubs at two occasions on Thursday 21 and Saturday 23. They will be given support by more guest bands! Rock School students and fellow musicians from both sides of Mitrovica are invited to join the fun, with a second bus travelling to Skopje just for the concerts. 

- Alesov

3 September 2013

The D-Day: The Battle of the Bands Concert

August 31 was the explosion of the week and the highlight of this Band Camp. All the efforts and the energy put into the Ambassador Band Camp program, from trainers, coaches, MRS staff and students alike, throughout this week converge at The Battle of the Bands on Saturday evening. 

The venue that hosted our closing week competition concert, the Havana Club, was big enough to fit up to 500 hundred heads but the audience, must be noted, was only half the projected capacity. The club is famous for hosting top regional bands and has a big name in Skopje's clubbing scene and it has a massive cozy stage.

Among the attendees were stundents' family and closest friends from Mitrovica who had come for the occasion to support their rock stars.

The three young competing bands opened the night taking turns on stage performing their original songs that they worked on for two months only to finalize them at the Skopje Band Camp with the guide from coaches from the Fontys Rockacademie, our program partners from Tilburg, Holland. 

Toe May Toes, Sublime 6 and Schism were competing for a touring chance with The Artchitects in Holland and Berlin and all three did their utmost to land the prize. 

The Toe May Toes performing on stage

Sublime 6 rocking out Skopje
Young hopes Schism debuting on stage

After the sets from the three rivaling bands the presiding jury, Will Maas, a top-notch keys player from Holland, plumped out of the electrifying atmosphere of the stage to analyze and scrutinize the performances of the three bands. According to his words which he delivered to the audience and the bands on the stage it was all but easy singling out one band and proclaim a winner. He congratulated the bands and the coaches for an outstanding achievements clinched in such short time and admired their enthusiasm for rock music.
Will Maas announcing the winners of the Battle of the Bands
In between the official part and the jury session a host of bands entertained the audience. A band comprising the Fontys Rockacademie coaches, Mighty Mice, graced the audience with their set of intriguing experimental tracks proceeded by a set from The Babylon, a band of teachers, which garnered ovations and shouts of approval from the crowd and a concluding set by the A-team superstars The Artchitects who also pulled out their new song Let it Go setting the crowd in motion.

Mighty Mice on stage

Babylon-ers brimming with raw rock and roll power

Salvo of boisterous r'n'r heralded the only mosh-pit of the night; The Artchitects

Needless to say the shock waves of excitement spreading across the venue as the jury announces the winners peaked at this point of the evening. Mingled emotions of excitement, happiness and sadness could be felt as the winners are separated from the runner-ups. The young sestet talent Schism was voted the most promising creative band out of the three and the Toe May Toes occupying the runner-up position. The Sublime 6 was left on the third place but was encouraged to rock on for their potential.

Band Camp fresh winners together on stage

The Ambassador Band Camp wagon moves on to Holland in October where the winning bands will get more professional tailored coaching and record even more songs and tour around the country.
See you soon.


Photoshoot of a photoshoot

On Saturday we had a pro photographer who had come all the way from Pristina to do a band photoshoot. MRS staff glimpsed into the session to see how our students are liking it and what stunts they had to perform to produce amazing end photos.

Thanks for a wonderful beforenoon, Fitim and to the students for the great enthusiasm show!

30 August 2013

Ambassador Band Camp Studio Recording

As planned our A-team bands have been more than prolific in the creative binge they embarked on in Skopje. Each band came up with 2-3 new original songs which they starting recording as early as Wednesday morning. Here are some photos taken from the recording session of the Toe May Toes' new song.

Final preparations and micing of the instrument @Toe May Toes recording session in studio with Fontys Rockacademie coaches.

Inside the studio with Band Camp sound engineers and Fontys Rockacademie coaches.

Fully mixed songs from Toe May Toes, Sumbime 6 and Schism coming up soon.



Ambassador Band Camp Day Off

Wednesday was a day reserved for a recreational outing where the students, their teachers and the whole Band Camp team caught a little respite from the hectic week of rehearsing and music-making. Veles, a charming small resort 30+ km northeast off the Macedonian capital, provided for a good location for Band Campers to recoup their energy.

Band Campers dipping in swimming pool at hotel Romantique, Veles.

A big group lunch on a relaxing afternoon off in Veles.

27 August 2013

Ambassador Band Camp Activities

Check out some of the photos taken on the first day of the Mitrovica Rock School Ambassador Band Camp at Skopje.

 Activities at Skopje Band Camp are in full swing. The first day at the band camp was reserved for meet and greet as to the many of the participants this is the first time at Skopje Band Camp. Not long after each of our A-team bands got assigned a trainer did the practice rooms resounded with gritty rock and roll riffs and the ambiance of creative swept through.

The Fontys Rock Academy supplemented the teams and added diversity to the coaching the student get here. They helped senior teachers and trainers achieve better efficiency by individually working with students and helping out with instrument set-up.

"I learned one trick how to tune my guitar and using my hearing instead of risking to snap a wire on my guitar. They help us a lot" - Ivan 

The practice rooms and the studio are fully operational and up to our standards. The band camp is rolling good.

An eventful introduction to the week. Stay tuned for more.

25 August 2013

Meet the jury!

The 2013 Ambassador Band Camp competition will be presided over by senior Fontys Rockacademie professor and Music Lab section head Will Maas. Meet the jury! 

Dutch keys player Will Maas has his roots in singer-songwriter music, rock and Hammond jazz. He studied Hammond organ and keyboards at the Conservatory (i.e. Music Academy) in Enschede, the Netherlands.

Will has been a professional session musician for over 25 years, playing with well-known musicians such as Marco Borsato, Alain Clark, Lenny Kuhr, Nick & Simon, Angela Groothuizen, Beth Hart and Stevie Ann. In 2004, Will Maas was awarded “best keys player of the Netherlands” by his fellow musicians, receiving the Duiveltje (“Little Devil”) Award.

For the past 12 years, Will has been playing in Ilse DeLange’s band. With this band he also recorded Ilse’s most recent album, “Eye Of The Hurricane.”

Will with Nick & Simon:

Will with Beth Hart:

Will with Ilse de Lange:


And another beauty with Ilse de Lange:

22 August 2013

Skopje Band Camp Participants' Intros: Lira R




Heeeey guys! I am Lira, 20, from Mitrovica. I am a newly enrolled student of MRS and I play the saxophone. I am a music and food lover. This is my first time in this summer school, and I can hardly wait to see you all there and rock together. Cheerio :)) 

-Lira Ramadani

Skopje Band Camp Participants' Intros: Murat B




Hi, I’m  Murat and I play  guitar. This is my second time that I will perform in Skopje. I can’t wait to come there and play with my band mates. Hope to have good time there…


-Murat Bajrami