We’ve been happy to host a range of workshops spanning through a vast spectrum of topics this month given by elite international level artists. The workshops with Jazzmandu, which is one of the biggest music festivals in Kathmandu, had Samuel Wooton “Toy story” a band from Germany and Palouse Jazz Project from USA, coming to the school to interact with the students and faculty. Toy Story gave a public workshop on how to work together as a team when you are playing in a band. They talked about the difference in approach between playing as an individual in the practice room and playing with other people. The Palouse Jazz Project had a powerful horn section with the saxophone, trumpet and trombone as the protagonists. They guided our big band on how to make different parts blend and work together when there is so much happening in the music all at once.
We had another visit from Jonas Winterhalter, who is a German musician, trumpet player and composer. He is also the director of his own big band. He gave a great workshop on how to compose songs. It is often the case for a songwriter that they end up waiting for inspiration to come and they find themselves stuck in their tracks. His class was on how to get through this common barrier and generate new ideas whenever in need.
The most recent workshop was from Mathias Hagen. We are proud to say that he was one of the first students at the Kathmandu Jazz Conservatory ten years ago. He was just starting to learn the saxophone then and now he has become a professional musician in Norway. He talked about improvisation and the state of mind you need to build to be able to play freely and expressively.