This summer I had the privilege to study Music Performance in Vienna Austria through IES Abroad. Originally I was not excited to study abroad, but my experience in Austria changed my entire opinion of study abroad curriculum and opportunity.
The IES Music Performance program in Vienna is an exquisite program filled with teachers who have a wealth of knowledge on the performance subject. While their criticism was sometimes harsh, it was the commentary I desperately needed to expedite my development as a musician. My voice teacher, my pianist, and my professors, taught me valuable technique and skill that are truly enhanced my abilities. The teachers broke down my way of approaching new music, German text, and performance giving me new tools, to learn music a lot easier. I am extremely thankful for the advice that was given to me and grateful to have worked with these knowledgeable musicians.
I also hoped to enhance my abilities as a German speaker, and singer while in Vienna. Throughout my vocal studies at home, I struggled singing and pronouncing German music, so I made sure to take German while I was in Austria. Not only was the class extremely helpful with my knowledge of the language, but also being in a city such as Vienna made me practice my German. It forced me to become phonetically familiar with German pronunciation, and more profound in my use of German grammar. I came back with a lot more confidence in my German abilities.
What I learned from this program was to appreciate studying a craft in its birthplace, and the knowledge that a city can provide a student. Studying abroad is a unique experience that allows a student to approach a subject from a new perspective. Being in Vienna gave me the perspective I needed to understand my Vocal craft, and technique. Learning in this new city with new teachers also gave me the perspective I needed to improve in different areas of my vocal abilities. I would definitely recommend the IES program to any musician who is looking to find a new approach to Music Performance, and broaden their level of music understanding. But I would also recommend this program to anyone who is looking to experience life and culture in a European city. While some of the main attractions are in the center of the city, all of Vienna has a lot of central European culture, and beauty to experience. It is a city and a study abroad opportunity that should not be overlooked.