A series of unrelated events led me to be involved in creative learning. I wasn’t particularly interested in the process, or way of doing things, till I met a fellow musician who happened to do some teaching on a pioneering course at Guildhall School of Music and Drama about this sort of thing, when I was a young musician. This colleague suggested that I might find the course interesting. I made enquiries, one event led to another and the rest is history…
When I was a student on the course, I didn’t expect to follow through on many of the tools of the trade that were provided when my year group got involved in projects. I must have been the only student on the course that year who hardly took any notes during the workshop training sessions. I simply didn’t expect to be doing that sort of work after I left the course. I was also the only student who didn’t miss a single class throughout the entire course duration, however.
After leaving Guildhall, I went on tour with a group that sang Southern African choral music, started composing music theatre pieces and focused on other sides of my artistic development. It was totally by chance that I got involved in doing lots of education work. I had to assemble my own tool kit of repertoire to be used in workshops, based on my experiences in theatre, opera, dance and composing for bands, etc.
On reflection, I can see that I discovered a part of myself around the time I did that course that I wasn’t aware of, at any point before the time I did it. Maybe the fact that I have built my own vocabulary for doing that sort of work is the reason behind my understanding of the basic principle that there are many ways that folks can make a contribution to the betterment of communities that does not necessarily need to be material.
This important lesson is probably the main piece of knowledge that can be gained from being exposed to a creative learning process that is well designed and led effectively. Is there something in this way of working that could revolutionise the way that learners all around the world could regard their personal relevance to the overall scheme of things?