Culture coach Simone will make the music teaching in Coevorden municipality swing

Simone Koelman (27) has been the first cultural coach in Coevorden municipality since November. The municipality wants to put art and culture back on the map and Koelman must become the spider in the web. Currently, her main focus is music education.

“As a cultural coach, it’s about connecting cultural celebrations,” explains Koelman, originally from New Amsterdam. “You bring as many people as possible into contact with the culture.” In addition to stimulating art and culture, the culture coach must also build bridges between different organizations within art and culture, education, care, welfare and sports.

Last year, the municipalities received an extra contribution from the government to give the cultural sector a boost, during and after the corona crisis. Coevorden spent part of that money appointing a cultural coach. In addition, Coevorden municipality has held the title since the summer of 2021 until the end of this year Drenthes Kulturkommunewhere it – in addition to the cultural coach’s activities – has all kinds of cultural events on the agenda.

Culture and art

Koelman’s first seven months are over, and during that time she mainly became acquainted with people and organizations. She noted that not everyone in Coevorden thinks the same about the concept of culture: “When I ask people what they mean by the word ‘culture’, they came up with answers like ‘norms and values’ and ‘traditions or religion’. Not everyone connects art. Then I must first explain what kind of culture I am involved in. “

After studying Business Economics, Cultural Management, she ended up in 2016 as an employee of the Secretariat & Marketing at Theater De Hofpoort in Coevorden. As a result, she already got to know the municipality in the field of culture. A year later, she started working in the Kunst & Cultuur Drenthe Foundation with, among other things, the Cultuurmenu, a cultural program for the primary school in various municipalities.

The new cultural coach is impressed by the passion of volunteers and employees of cultural institutions during the period when so little was possible in that sector due to corona initiatives. Still, she believes the art experience at Coevorden could well use a boost: “It’s not that nothing happens, but it can live longer. It’s not for nothing that a cultural coach has been appointed, and one can see that some have been cut down. made in recent years. on culture. “

Hidden gems

“You notice that there are many small, hidden gems in Coevorden municipality,” says Koelman. “I was recently at Kunst op Vijf, an art studio less than a hundred meters from the market. Or in Nieuwlande, where there is a brand new music studio that young talents use. There is a lot, but you have to see it and the Marketing part that follows with this, is also a profession in itself. A culture coach can also help with questions like ‘who is my target audience, how do I differentiate myself, how do I market myself?’ “

Therefore, from this autumn, she occasionally wants to set up network meetings, as is already the case in Borger-Odoorn: get to know each other, learn from each other and obtain information Many people do not know, for example, where to find the appropriate grants or fund schemes. You feel that there is a need for such a thing. “

music lessons

An important point of attention for the cultural coach in Coevorden is the promotion of music education. The music associations Excelsior from Oosterhesselen and Crescendo from Sleen indicate to the municipality that they see the number of children declining. The associations offer music lessons in the schools, but it does not yet happen everywhere. Children can then, if they wish, join a music association after a number of lessons at school.

“Music is extremely important,” Koelman says. “There are several reasons for this. Scientific research has shown that making music stimulates the brain, it brings children into contact with each other, it gives fun. And for me it is also a kind of outlet: When I make music, mine is “Of course other arts like writing, photography, etc. are also important, but because it’s being discussed now and it’s a lot of energy, I’m working on it a lot.”

Day for music lessons

That is why she had arranged the Day for Music Education in Aalden today: a meeting with schools, musicians, music teachers and police representatives in Coevorden municipality. “We participate in a series of presentations, and we discuss music education and how we can stimulate it,” says Koelman. “It is often seen that some masters or teachers do not consider themselves suitable enough for music teaching, or that the schools naturally focus primarily on compulsory subjects such as language and mathematics. But knowledge, skills, time and money should not be a problem for music teaching. I help Gladly.”

Music education is not limited to music in school. In Hoogeveen and Meppel, for example, you have Scala, in Assen you have Podium Zuidhaege, but in Coevorden you do not have such an visible institution since the Center for the Arts (CQ) disappeared from the stage. “It’s not because it’s not there in Coevorden,” Koelman replies. “For example, there are four teachers who teach music after school at Paul Kruger School, but that can not be seen from the outside. It does not have to be a physical location, as CQ was. I see it too. As my task to promote such initiatives. to promote. “

Music lesson could use boost

In addition, the demand for music education, according to the cultural coach, is fragmented. “A music teacher in Dalen, for example, was asked if he would teach violin, but if there is only one student, it is impossible. Or people learn to play an instrument through online workshops, such as explanatory videos on YouTube” , Koelman lists a number of reasons. “In addition, the interest shifts to DJ music and hip-hop. Therefore, I want to arrange workshops in that area in the near future.”

Enough to do, therefore, for the culture coach. She incorporates the results of the Day for Music Education Meeting in a recommendation to the municipality, which can incorporate it into the cultural program.

The appointment of the cultural coach is a pilot and will run at least until the beginning of 2023. During that period, Koelman therefore primarily wants to give music education a boost, but also continue to connect cultural organizations, arrange workshops and much more: “I still have a long way to go again. I’ve seen it and I’m far from done. You can always keep connecting the culture and keep running it, she laughs.

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