Each month, we take a closer look at one of the teachers involved in our Teacher Integration Program.
This month’s Teacher Spotlight focuses on Joost Niezing, from Groningen, Netherlands. For more information, visit Joost at www.drumschoolniezing.nl
Read on to learn more about Joost and his teaching practice in the Netherlands … and if you’d like to be considered for the teacher of the month spotlight – please click here to complete our application form!
Where are you located/where do you teach?
I am located in the north of the Netherlands in the musical town of Groningen. There are many places to play because of the 200,000 people who live here 35,000 are students from all over the world. In Groningen is also a Conservatorium of Music where a lot of teachers from New York are working, like drummers Ralph Peterson and Owen Hart. There is a lot of culture going on here. I built my “woodshed” 15 years ago and each week there are about 50 students who come to me to have drum lessons. I choose to stay a small drum school but maybe next year I will hire an extra teacher so I can play more. I now play in 2 big-bands and one small band.
How many students do you teach, and what is their range of ability levels?
I have 50 students from 6 to 72 years old, beginners to professionals.
What are your favorite teaching materials?
My favorite teaching materials are lots of books, play-along cds, MP4s, internet lessons (for short ideas) camcorder, mirror and lot of my own written ideas. Students can buy or hire DVDs or videos…Some books we use are Stick Control, Syncopation, Master Studies, PAS40 Rudiments, Mitchel Peters Dexterity/Intermediate Snare Studies. Basic drum/1and 2 ,New Breed 1&2, Afrocuban/Brazilian books ,Pickering cook-books, Latham, Doboe, Chapin, John Riley, Garibaldi and so on .For all these books I made new exercises or used play alongs from other books/songs..And a big mirror of course.
How are you incorporating new media (DVDs, Mp3s, Internet, etc) into your teaching?
I show a DVD or you-tube fragment when somebody had no time to study or to make an idea more clear
Any funny anecdotes/stories from your teaching?
Lots of funny stories (I sometimes remember them and write them down) I could not practice at home because we had a very rare big-ear bat on our loft where my drum kit was. And I would not disturb this animal.
General thoughts on drumming, teaching, music…
As a teacher you have to know your students. Is it just a nice hobby or does someone has higher goals? You’re working with different people, so there needs a different approach for each person .That is sometimes very difficult. How do you deal with unsure drummers? Drumming is also having guts. On the wall of my drum school are several posters with smiling drummers with the text “Drumming is Fun!!!” And it’s great that I can make a living of my drum profession.