Revolutionary teaching method shown at Kazakhstan Pavilion has potential to transform music therapy

Revolutionary teaching method shown at Kazakhstan Pavilion has potential to transform music therap

DUBAI, 17 November 2021 – For people of determination, music therapy has long been recognised for its ability to heal both physical and mental conditions, bridging the communication gap among children and adults, to help them express their inner feelings. Now, the next step in this form of therapy has been showcased at Expo 2020 Dubai.

Five years ago, teacher Gulsana Magzimbetova opened a school in Aktobe, Kazakhstan, to teach children and adults to play any instrument and any style of music by relying on colours and geometric shapes instead of standard musical notation.

Magzimbetova demonstrated her method on a two-stringed dombra at the Kazakhstan Pavilion at Expo 2020 to coincide with Expo’s Tolerance & Inclusivity Week and explained how the idea for her potentially revolutionary method of music education came about.

Revolutionary teaching method shown at Kazakhstan Pavilion has potential to transform music therapy
DUBAI, 17 November 2021. Tolerance and Inclusion, Culture and Art Instrumental performance at the Kazakhstan Pavilion, Expo 2020 Dubai. (Photo by David Koriako/Expo 2020 Dubai)

Gulsana Magzimbetova said: “The children at the preschool I was teaching at could not read or count. The only thing they understood were colours and shapes. The method I have developed can be used by anyone. My youngest student is three, my oldest is 83. So far I have taught more than 1,000 students.”

Sheet music using Magzimbetova’s method resembles a series of coloured rectangles and triangles, while the stem of her dombra has colour bars that help students know where to put their fingers.

Magzimbetova said she would like to see schools that teach her method open around the world – and that the results of her method are clear: “All the children who are playing instruments they usually have no bad habits … They are focused and they are really into learning process. Just as music is a universal language, it is an antidote to many ills.”

Tolerance & Inclusivity Week is the fourth of 10 Theme Weeks held throughout the six months of Expo 2020, under the Programme for People and Planet, Inspiring collective and meaningful action to address the world’s most critical challenges and opportunities.