The Royal Academy of Music (RAMA), Denmark
Jim Daus Hjernøe in Conversation
Jim Daus Hjernøe is a Danish professor of Jazz/Pop Choir directing at the Royal Academy of Music in Denmark. Jim heads up the RAMA Vocal Center, recognized internationally as the leading centre of innovation within the field. When Jim began teaching jazz/pop choir directing in the 1990s, he developed a learning philosophy called "The Intelligent Choir (TIC)“, whereby each choir member can unlock their musical potential. "Every singer should be aware of harmonic changes and should be able to harmonize a melody line instantly", was the first goal. Nowadays, the TIC method includes three pedagogical areas that are intertwining: Developing the musical skills - rhythm & groove, intonation & pitch, sound & blend, interpretation & expression, performance & concert design - is interlaced with implementing Vocal Painting, a sign language in which a co-creation between the conductor and the singer releases the instruction in the signs. The third element is activating "Kucheza ", a Swahili word that freely means "I am music "- a mindset in which everyone involved feels responsible for the musical co-creation.
In teaching the TIC methods, Jim had employed digital tools for online learning since 2010, when two Danish music academies merged to become RAMA. "I have this natural interest in digital tools and don't hold a master's degree in IT infrastructure. It is learning by doing for me, which is also typical for art schools like the Royal Academy of Music. We are researchers and are experimenting as we explore and develop the field." Around 2012, RAMA Vocal Center was allowed to do selected auditions and exams ONLINE in a pilot project. "It hit me when one of our students came from Brazil to do the audition for one hour. We could do this better because there was nothing in it that we couldn't have done online. When Corona came, we could continue like we usually did because we had all the systems up and running."