Experts discussed the issues of music education on the forum organized by RMU

All-Russian Forum “Music Education. Issues and Challenges of the XXI century” took place in Moscow on November 25-27, 2015. This large-scale three-day event, organized by the Russian Musical Union (RMU), hosted the representatives of the country’s music universities, leading specialists from Moscow, St. Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Rostov-on-Don and other Russian cities. Foreign experts also participated in the event: Ian Smith – President of the European Music Council (EMC), Silja Fischer – Secretary General of the International Music Council (IMC), Grzegorz Kurzhinsky – a member of the European Association of Conservatories (AEC).

– It seems natural and logical that the first Russian Musical Union large-scale event is dedicated to the question of music education, – said the RMU General Director Andrey Krichevsky. – Traditional music education is fundamental for music culture and its key components. It is symbolic that the forum takes place in the branch establishments of the Glinka National Museum Consortium of Musical Culture – this structure has been a treasury of monuments of music culture for decades. National music heritage popularization, preservation and development of the best traditions of the art of music – these are common goals that unite the Museum Consortium of Musical Culture and the Russian Music Union.

The first day of the forum was marked with reports by Anatoly Zucker, Doctor of Arts, professor of the Rostov Conservatory (“The dichotomy of culture and contemporary music education”) and by professor Andrey Lesovichenko, Doctor in Cultural Studies (“Music education in the context of cultural globalization processes”).

– I hope that we all leave this place full of new ideas and perspectives that we are able to apply in practice – wished Mr. Zucker to the audience. – This kind of forums is extremely relevant these days, because today’s music and art education is going through a time of great mutations. We keenly feel that the changes are required – much is out of date, much is just not enough, and therefore such discussions give new ideas, which is very important for our sphere.

In his report, Mr. Zucker stressed the need to integrate the mass music culture in the Russian music education, which today is “completely aimed at academic music”.

Speaking next, professor Lesovichenko outlined three key challenges of modern music education: the problem of access to quality education, the problem of unequal start opportunities and the problem of the commercialization of art.

– Only in this kind of communion dofundamental ideas crystallize, – the professor shared his thoughts about the forum. – A new idea always goes into some practice. Basically, such forums solve not just important, but critical issues. We must arrange these meetings and do it regularly – this is perfect that today’s event has a true national scale, with the participation of different regions representatives – so much depends upon them.

The report of Evgeny Orlov, the music producer and founder of the international creative movement “Republic Kids”, drew the public excitement. He discussed with the audience a pressing problem of the lack of creative niches for new and interesting musicians. The day ended with a round table dedicated to the stable and mobile structures in the various segments of music education. Vsevolod Zaderatsky, Doctor of Arts, professor of the Moscow Conservatory, took the role of the moderator of the discussion.

The rich program of the second day of the Forum was dedicated to music in secondary schools. Elena Nikolaeva, Doctor of Pedagogical Sciences, professor of Moscow State Pedagogical University, opened it with her report “Music education in school: from the past to the future”. It was followed by the presentation of Eduard Abdullin, Doctor of Pedagogical Sciences, head of the UNESCO chair at the MSPU. He spoke on “General music education in the context of the concept activities of the UNESCO chair at the Moscow State Pedagogical University.”

There was also a practical part – Daniel Kuchma, the graduate from the MSPU Institute of the Arts, held an open lesson “The Firebird” with the students of music school №324; and Elena Zotova, the school principal, demonstrated the project “Children make opera.”

The program of this day also included reports on the following topics: “Instrumental music playing in the general education as a demand and challenge of the XXI century” (Marina Kosmovskaya, Doctor of Arts, professor, head of department of methods of teaching music and fine arts at the Kursk University), “Music in the context of development of mental functions” (Alla Toropova, Doctor of Pedagogical Sciences, professor at the MPGU), “Elementary music school. Dialectics of stable and mobile factors” (Elena Tomilina, Deputy Director of the Children’s Art School №2 in Zhukovsky, Doctor of Pedagogical Sciences), “School and new forms of local music-making. Adaptation of the student to the newly discovered art form of the twentieth century” (Pavel Levadny, Academic Secretary of the Musicology Guild at the Russian Music Union), “The use of multimedia and interactive technologies in the classes of elementary music theory and solfege in children’s art schools and children’s music schools. From work experience” (Tatiana Borovik, Yekaterinburg) and “About some aspects of music education and education at the museum (through the example of The Glinka National Museum Consortium of Musical Culture)” (Irina Novichkova, Doctor of Arts, senior research associate of The Glinka National Museum Consortium of Musical Culture).

The last day of the forum was devoted to professional music education. Boris Borodin, Doctor of Arts, professor of the Ural State Conservatory, spoke on “The education of a professional instrumentalist: traditions and evolution”, jazz pianist Grigory Fain spoke about non-academic structures in universities and the dawn of specific classes oriented on entertainment arts and crafts. Valery Piasetsky, professor of the Moscow Conservatory, Head of the Department of Special Piano of the Central Music School, clearly demonstrated the way of methodological innovation in his report. Alexandr Maklygin, Doctor of Arts, professor of the Kazan Conservatory, spoke the last with his report “The established principles of professional training in modern Russia and the conditions for the development of a comprehensive (general) music education structure.”

The forum included presentations of two projects of the National Fund of Copyright Holders’ Support and “Firma Melodiya”: “Phonochrestomathy” and “The anthology of Russian piano music.”