The thing with musicians is that our hobby is our work

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I often meet nice, colorful and inspiring people. One man I recently met is called Roberto, he is a musician and teaches private classes to children and adults in The Hague. I asked if he wanted to be featured on my blog. He was glad to be and below you can read the result.

1. How did you start out as a music teacher?

I started out as a part time job while studying music. It turned out there was a high demand for music teachers for children, to me it seemed a natural job to do. With time I realized how much I like it. I received many positive feedback of students who were happy with my classes.

2. What is your music background in terms of education, experience and passion?

It all started very early. Through my parents I have been listening to classical music since I remember. We were listening music together, talking about it and playing games like “Who made this music, Mozart or Beethoven”. Then as a teenager I started to listen to bands and contemporary music. I always met up with friends to listen and see videos of music. I didn’t play my mom’s guitar, that was resting in its case for ever, until a school teacher taught us to play guitar. Then I had a couple of good private teachers and it became clear that I wanted to be a musician. I have a bachelor in arrangements and composition of popular music in Santiago, Chile, and a master’s degree in Sonology (electronic and computer music) from the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. There I acquired another passion which is computer programming related to sound and music.

3. How did you end up teaching in the Netherlands?

In 2002 I came to study Sonology. First it helped me during my studies, but eventually it became my main job.

4. Could you describe the people you teach; adults and children? What type of instruments do you teach?

I teach mainly children in the age range of about 7 till 18 years old. I do teach a few passionate adults too. I mostly teach guitar but also solfège, theory and harmony, depending the interest of the student. And to some I also teach how to produce music in a home studio situation.

5. What type of music do you like?

All type, but when it comes to listening music by myself, I like the kind of introspective one, music that searches the hidden corners of the consciousness. It might be the singing of African Pygmy, or an orchestral piece by Arvo Part. But it all depends on the situation of course. In general, my preference goes out to music that is an expression of an artistic or personal neccessity rather than music made with commercial goals.

6. What do you love most of teaching?

It is really rewarding to see my students achieving things that at the beginning appeared to be impossible to them.

7. What are your interests besides teaching music?

The thing with musicians is that our hobby is our work, but besides that, I like to travel, to meet new people and places, to eat well and healthy and to enjoy nature, but mostly spend time with my family and to see how my daughter grows.

8. How can people get in touch with you for music lessons?

People can write to me at garretonroberto@gmail.com. I teach in English, Spanish and Dutch.

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