Controlling violence

What are the effects of music on a child? How can they benefit him or her?


I think it depends on the child, first of all. I think that every instrument has different qualities appealing to different personalities. A violin player or a piano player will want to lead. A viola player, though, will be good at negociating. A cellist will be full of compassion. A drummer, a percussionist will be a violent person.

Of course!… Of course NOT! These are general ideas, concepts that only a madman would think of.

Well, then I’ll speak about my own experience only.

I have some young students, very young who are erratic, messy, easily distracted. And a lot of them have tried other instruments before I see them. They have held a flute or a guitar, for example. But then, they arrive in my studio and they try the drums. I should say, more appropriately: THE DRUMS!!!!! And they go for it. They dive into it, they exert all their energy, all their aggressiveness, all of their frustrations on the drums. No filters, no obstacles, just pure violence. Some of them scream while they do it. It comes from down deep. Usually the parents are surprised. They’ve never seen their child so liberated. Because it is liberating! Drums are meant to be bashed, hit, wailed on! They were conceived just for that purpose! As a matter of fact, they sing beautiful when pummeled.

As a teacher, I understand the students needs for that exertion. It is my job to use it to make my pupils learn something, to channel all of that violence into something productive. And since the drums are essentially an accompanying instrument, I also show my young ones how to play nice with others. And violence becomes about art and control!