31 October 2016

Tim Halliday raises money for our Rock School

Great news!

Tim Halliday works as a performance technician in the Faculty of Arts, Science and Technology at the University of Northampton. With the support from Northampton’s hotly-tipped OhBoy!, and Brighton three-piece Broadbay, the university has organized a benefit concert for our Rock School, and the foremost thanks goes to Tim Halliday, who initiated the event.

The concert was held in Northampton’s Picturedrome venue on 22nd of October, and has achieved to raise 1,245 pounds for Mitrovica Rock School. Part of it will be spent on a microKorg keyboard to be used by both branches, and the rest will serve for organizing inter-ethnic workshops.

Tim’s involvement with the rock school started when he visited Kosovo in order to document a University of Northampton initiative being run for young people here.

He has expressed how proud he is of Northampton for making this event a great success, saying:

I was humbled and overwhelmed by the support for the fundraiser on Saturday. The total raised far exceeded my expectations and will have a lasting impact for the Mitrovica Rock School. Northampton did itself (and me) proud. (source: http://www.northampton.ac.uk/news/gig-goers-get-behind-benefit-gig-for-kosovan-rock-school/)

Huge thanks to Tim and Northampton, as well as everyone else who participated in this benefit!

Photo credit: Richard Byles

26 October 2016

Workshops with Ronald Seerden

Ronald Seerden is a guitar teacher and a band coach at the Rock Academy in Tilburg, Netherlands since 2000. Besides that, he is also a freelance musician, playing as a sideman for several Dutch artists. Our students had the pleasure of meeting him for the first time at Skopje Summer School 2013, when he had the role of a judge who would decide which band deserved which place, as the concert performance was viewed as a competition between the bands that year. This time around, we had a chance to get to know him better through his lecture on band coaching, and he also coached our mixed bands on their rehearsals.

Ronald has expressed that his workshop is more of an experience-sharing rather than a basic lecture, which it was, and that was very valuable for the group to learn about his teaching methods and get an insight into his work as a Rock Academy teacher. He spoke about his methods on testing the musicality of the students, making them feel comfortable in class, encouraging and inspiring them, being their friend while maintaining the authority, etc. Also, he had a chance to show his methods by coaching our mixed bands, and they have expressed how successful their rehearsals went and how much Ronald’s help means to them.

Big thanks to Ronald for visiting and sharing his knowledge!

14 October 2016

Mixed workshops

Hey everyone, thanks for tuning in!

These last few weeks were mostly all about workshops for our students and trainee teachers. We’ve had workshops for drums, bass, keys, etc., where the students had a chance to really expand their existing knowledge and take their creativity to a new level. For the first time, teachers are working at both branches so they can share their knowledge where it's most needed. Sometimes they work one-on-one, sometimes in small groups. Teachers work hard to develop interesting lesson material that isn't covered in the general lesson program, to make sure these sessions are productive. Here's a glance at one of the drum workshops:

More exciting news are coming soon, so keep checking in!

6 October 2016

Mixed bands at Hotel Gracanica

Hotel Gracanica has welcomed us again, but this time for a live acoustic gig of our two mixed bands – Sublime 6 and Akasha. The weather was in our favor, so the stage was set up in their beautiful garden near the swimming pool.

Besides the Mitrovica Rock School team, the audience consisted of hotel guests and people who came out especially for the concert, who gave our mixed bands a very warm reception. But the gig was not the only thing planned for our bands – they also shot music videos with Kiklop Kikloparium and Goran Jolovic (the same team that did the music videos of Proximity Mine and High Frequency in August) and gave radio interviews for BBC World Service and Ernst-Ludwig v. Aster of German public radio. As always, our bands were professional with the gig as well as giving interviews.

After the dinner, everyone was safely transported back to Mitrovica. There are more activities planned for our bands, so stay tuned to find out what happens next!

Photos by Kiklop Kikloparium