The BhutanMusicFoundation is thrilled to announce that their joint initiative-
The Kilu Mentorship Project - has been awarded a Prince Clause Foundation grant to introduce music into the wider community.
The project lasted one year and had exponential outreach for all participants.
How it works:
Kilu Music School and BMF chose four of the most advanced music students- each one is to teach four to five children from the less advantaged districts who otherwise wouldn't have access to musical instruments or instruction.
The children were chosen based on their enthusiasm and promise to commit a certain time each day to learning music- minimum 15 minutes daily. We felt that 15 minutes will soon become 1/2 hour with these motivated students. They also promised to share what they learned with at least 4 to 5 enthusiastic family members or friends who also committed to the program. Kilu provided instruments (also with headphones) for practice in the main hall of the school.
In this way, our 4 advanced music students, under the supervision of the two core teachers at Kilu and help from the BMF learned pedagogical skills and teamwork. They were reimbursed for their time and efforts, which created a friendly and somewhat professional atmosphere.
The outreach from our original 4 teachers had the capacity to reach over 100 members of the community. We felt that this strengthened basic family ties through enjoyable group activities and encouraged parents to experience music firsthand. Outreach to friends was beneficial in that they would in turn demonstrate their new musical skills to others in their age groups o.
We engaged Bhutanese traditional music expert, Kheng Sonam Dorji from the Music of Bhutan Research Center in Thimphu to teach the fundamentals of simple folk songs, showing how the asymmetrical phrasing is counted, which scales are used, and demonstrate the rhythmic structures. From these aspects we chose some elements on which to base original composed songs from the students. The songs varied from very short to somewhat longer (4 minutes).
This will encourage creative expression in the family and among friends.
Show and Tell
Public performances were organised which will further support the training.
We held a gala public concert for participants at Kilu Music School open to the public, as well as mini concerts in various venues and tea houses near Thimphu.