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dBs Music; The 25 Year Question

Building Dreams & New Futures

Amongst all of the ongoing educational development taking place at dBs Music Berlin as they prepare their programmes for a September 2013 opening, the one big question they keep asking themselves is this:

“What will education look like in 25 years time?”

Education and training are undergoing a revolution. Much of this is as a result of the enabling power of the internet. Our ‘online everywhere’ culture gives us unprecedented access to extraordinary levels of freely available information.

Much of education in the last 100 years has been quite simply about learning and remembering information. An outstanding establishment was simply one that knew how to pass on that information in the most effective way or worse, how to effectively scare their students into applying themselves to the task of memorising and regurgitating information!

Of course dBs Music will be working on their answers to that question for the next 25 years but fundamentally they think that to be an outstanding educational establishment in the next 100 years, a completely different focus will need to be established.

Amongst other things, the focus will be on:

  • Practise of craft
  • The development of the whole person
  • Building the creative muscle
  • Assimilating information and synthesising it into new ideas
  • Learning to innovate
  • Filtering information quickly and effectively
  • Learning when and how to take effective action
  • Learning to succeed
  • Learning to take risk
  • Learning to listen
  • Learning to communicate

Finding the right answers to this question will not be easy and developing new ways of teaching will be challenging but educational institutions that fail to see the revolution that is happening around them will be in great danger of making themselves entirely redundant.

Sitting alongside the 25 year question, is our general approach to education which we could sum up with these three short phrases.

1. Passion in Progress
2. Learning through Doing & Collaboration
3. The Wider the Smile – The Harder The Work Going On

Passion in Progress

We have a warning sign written in large red letters ready to hang at the door of our new Berlin based centre which simply says “Passion in Progress”. As educators, we believe it is our job to ignite your passion and help you keep it burning. Passion is the fire that will heat your creative juices to boiling point. Passion overcomes fear. The fears that we all face. The fear of failing, the fear of being different, the fear of falling behind our peers, the fear of jumping too far ahead of our peers, the fear of being ridiculed.

Losing that fear is paramount if we are to push our creative boundaries as far as they’ll go and envision futures not yet here

Doing & Collaboration

Learning through doing and collaboration are key to the dBs approach. Of course our students also learn the theory which supports their doing. But doing is paramount and we think it is part of our duty to provide them with at least some of the ten thousand hours of practice that Anders Ericsson believes they need to become a real expert.

Collaboration is a part of everyday dBs life. Collaboration with our fellow students, collaboration with our tutors, collaboration across the wider online community and collaboration with the music industry experts and organisations with whom we are working in partnership.


Play is also a crucial ingredient in a dBs centre. In fact at times it can feel like a technological toy room. In a dBs centre we tend to assume that the wider the smile, the harder the work going on and the deeper the exploration.

Fun though a technological toy room can be, the technology alone is not enough. The most important ingredient is an environment which constantly encourages and develops creativity.

Technology married with creativity is what really makes our hearts sing.

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