I did not seek out nor did I study music education - it simply came to me, stayed and became an integral part of my life.
When I was still a student at Meerbusch Municipal School of Music (Städtische Musikschule Meerbusch), > Ingrid Kuntze, the school's former Head, approached me: "We've got a child here who uses a wheelchair, and the mother is no longer able to carry her with the wheelchair up the stairs in our school (There was no lift); it's all too heavy and cumbersome. I would like to get some other children into a group with the student, and I want to ask you to teach this ensemble – at the wheelchair user's home, actually."
I gladly accepted this challenge, which had come completely unexpected, and thus I became a junior teacher at Meerbusch Municipal School of Music (> Städtische Musikschule Meerbusch). We were practising inclusion then without making a song and dance about it, long before the terminology for music education for the disabled was established. This first inclusive group soon developed into one of the most creative, joyful and intense music groups I've worked with to date. Numerous individual students and small groups of recorder players were added, and thanks to this educational activity I was able to fund the first few years of my musicology studies (Subsequent years were funded through commissions for television and working as the press officer for the Federal Union of German Music Schools (> Bundesverband Deutscher Musikschulen)
Since moving to Karlsruhe, my practice of music education has expanded and deepened. Since 2012, I've been leading the recorder ensemble, intermediate level, at Karlsruhe Free Waldorf School (> Freie Waldorfschule Karlsruhe), and I have set up an adult recorder playing group at the Adult Education Centre (Volkshochschule). Over four years (2016-2019), I was also teaching music at the Waldorf School to classes from Year 4 to Year 8. Through one-to-one tuition and in group lessons, my students learn to play the soprano, alto and tenor recorder (Unfortunately, there is no demand for bass recorder lessons)
To work in music education with amateur players from all age groups means a lot to me, especially in this day and age. The direct contact with people, the shared experience of the language of music, and indeed of most varied musical worlds with all their colours, emotions and connections, are only superficially about "having fun". For me, these things are rather about immersing yourself in artistic dimensions, understanding connections and contexts and exploring their depth, contrasts and beauty. I also look at these processes as aesthetic education, and in my lessons, I wish to convey and facilitate a sense of joy that moves us deep inside - a joy that does not require digital technology, intellectual theorising or mechanical functioning but must always involve the whole person.