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Building tunnels and bridges

Recently I read that it is more expensive to drill a tunnel than to build a bridge.

Both help people to get from A to B.
One is in everyones view, the other one almost invisible.

Bridges show the people: We are doing something! Look, the bridge is build, the investment was worthwhile. Come look, see and admire!

Tunnels on the other hand are helping, too, but they are not catching much attention.

I remember when my husband and I visited a famous sight for train lovers, the Semmering Bahn. It was built around 1850 to bring Austrian trains to the Mediterranean Sea over the Alps.

The Semmering Bahn contains bridges and tunnels. What made it the most expensive venture at that time were the tunnels, not the pretty bridges everybody admires today.


When we are teaching we help people get from A to B as well.
We need to build bridges and tunnels to assist them.
Learning is hard and the learner will need our assistance through the rough patches, through frustration, lack of confidence and motivation.

What are we as teachers focusing on – on the shiny bridges that are for everyone to see and that tell the world we are here? Or are we there to support our students through the tunnels? There is almost no reward there because tunnels are almost invisible.


When we are creating art, I think we need both. We need eyes and ears to receive what we are trying to do with our performance (and we clearly see what happens without those in these days – the arts are dying when there is no audience to look, see and admire).

But we also need to be the tunnel builders who are just there to support.
Not much glory there to get at first glance.

Helping others to navigate through darkness, fear and frustration is on the other hand the most glorious thing, we humans are capable of. It helps us to be the higher octave of ourselves, being a truly caring person, full of empathy, goodwill and support.


Build bridges and build tunnels.
Keep your eyes on the hard work that many times no one can see, keep it on the tunnels.
It’s not about the outer games, it is about being there for others.

The tougher the times get, the more we will grasp this.

With so much love,



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Dangerous Easter Bunny

I know, I am late, Easter is already over.
But still I was thinking of the easter bunny the other day.
This creature can teach us a lot.

I remember, as a child, I was thinking long and hard how the the easter bunny did it.
How did he carry the eggs?
How did he bring all this stuff?
How did he schlepp around the toys and the chocolate?

Did he have a bagback or some sort of a cart?
He does not even have hands, so how the hell does he carry stuff?



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Little Oak Tree

In times of uncertainty, we tend to worry. We worry about the future, how things will turn out. We worry about how others are going to decide. We worry about finances and we try to protect ourselves from any harm that could possibly come to us, because things unexpectedly went wonky.

What benefit does it bring when we worry?
I am really good at worrying and spent so much time doing that, that I started asking myself: “What benefit do my worries bring?”

And the answer I came up with is:
1.) I use and train my fantasy – because I see ghosts where there are none :o)
2.) In my mind I paint a horrible picture and try to deal with that horror I just invented.

So the benefits are that I am a ghost creator and a problem solver of problems that 99% of the time never come into reality.
Is this useful?
Uuuhm…. maybe for ghosts and for my ego, to tell myself what great solutions I am able to come up with.


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Realist or Optimist?

What do you think: Who gets farther in life – the realist or the optimist?
What’s the better approach to learn and to get things done, to accomplish more in life and to get more out of life?

Realists do see things as they are.
They see a failure for what it is, a failure. When things go wrong they see what is missing and they understand how much they are off course.

What’s the consequence?
Realists see how far they are away from the outcome they wanted. They see their performance for what it is. Not good enough.

What do they do next?>>

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More interesting…

We are competing with – everything.
Everybody has the whole world in his hand, as long as the battery lasts.
Even little children have an iPhone and access to everything, everywhere, all the time.

Following others is safer than trying (and possibly failing).
Consuming is easier than cultivating.
Watching is more convenient than doing. (You don’t have to move your ass.)

We are entrained on following, consuming and watching from an early age on.


As teachers we are competing with this little box.
There is always something more enticing than playing scales.>>

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Old Lady’s Wisdom

Recently I read an article about a lady called Ruth Knelman. She is 109 years old, super healthy, lives in a beautiful apartment and does all her own cooking.

I personally like reading articles about people who accumulated wisdom. In the news we hear so much about unhealthy and corrupt people. That tends to give us the mistaken impression that many people are bad and that old people are negative and in a bad place.

In fact, real life often shows us that the opposite is true! Public personalities are featured in the media outlets because they bring sensation, foster rumors and chit chat and create fear. And fear sells.
Interviews with decent real life people are not sensational.
These people just do what is right and live their truth.


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False concepts that hurt

Our modern time promises a lot.
We hear about life hacks and quick fixes all the time.
And about things that bring us a wonderful new world full of awe and convenience.

“Be connected to everybody through technology, 24/7 – all the time!”
And people feel more lonely than ever.

“Order everything online!”
And people get fat because they don’t move any more.

“Eat lot’s of … (special pill) and get healthy!”
And people today suffer from more than 80.000 illnesses.

Is it a good idea to teach the next generation that they only need to push buttons, sit on a couch all day long, get everything they want – and all free of shipping costs from giant discounter companies employing robots?>>

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Funny expectation

When I look back how I felt about teaching first, I can see how silly I was.
I started giving lessons and the next thing that happend was that I wondered how much patience I had to develop.

For some reason, I expected the task of educating to be easy. Kind of: I show you how, you get it the first time around, I call you talented and me a great teacher.

Reality looks different.
It goes like this: The first lesson is fantastic. After that, it starts getting hard to even open the bassoon case.

We both feel overwhelmed. The student because their schedule is already overly packed and because it’s so damn hard to learn.
Me, because before even teaching one little thing, I have to pump up huge amounts of motivation. Like the animation guy in an all-inclusive vacation club.
Psychology tactics sometimes come first, music comes second. Or third. Or forth.>>

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Everyone else

They say: “Don’t make waves, accept things as they are, you can’t change other people or the system.”

And yes, partly that’s true. We indeed NEVER ever can change anyone, except maybe our puppy to get housetrained… Wanting to changing the system also seems an idea that just pops up, after you smoked magic mushrooms. Or if your name is Don Quichote.

But what about not making waves and accepting things as they are?
Is it really a good plan to follow what everyone else is doing?


Recently I heard a funny conversation. It has been said that making concerts with “no pressure” would be a great approach. And yes, on the surface that might sound very welcoming, inclusive and human.>>

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Three Learnings In 10 Years Of Publishing

If you read this, you are probably one of those people we did all this for. 113 titles in print, in stores on 4 continents and played by bassoonists of all ages, sizes and hairstyles. For 10 years we worked our buns off to bring the best bassoon books and the best educational music material possible to you.

We treasure you dearly and in all those years I never said thank you to you publicly on the blog. You are making all of this possible. I am more than honored to serve you and my team and I are committed to do this for as long as good bassoon sheet music is needed.