“What if studying was like savouring a pizza?”

Table of Contents


Starting with an interpretation and adaptation of Professor Burton Kaplan’s text “The Basic Paradigm of Study – The Observation Technique,” and adjusting the presented principles from a perspective with elements of a playful-pedagogical nature, this approach employs the analogy of savouring everyday meals, particularly a “Four Seasons” pizza. The goal is to stimulate students’ awareness of the role of the senses and memory in observing the world around them, specifically in the act of studying an instrument.

Drawing inspiration from the realm of food and the creation of a “Four Seasons” pizza, where each slice/season of the pizza has its specific ingredients, the same concept is applied to the world of musical performance. Each of the fundamental elements of music listed by Burton Kaplan (Rhythm, Intonation, Tone, and Objective and Subjective Expression) also comprises ingredients that must be considered and mastered to observe and “savour” them, thereby significantly enhancing musical performance.

By sharing this approach with the teaching community and incorporating the study methods recommended by the author, the objective is to utilize sensory experiences already inherent in children’s daily lives to promote and develop effective teacher-student communication. This involves tapping into the imagination and creativity that children possess when studying the instrument.

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About the speaker

Luis Norberto Teixeira da Silva, Viola

Luís Norberto Silva has been consistently teaching since 1995 and has been a faculty member at various schools. He has also gained experience in pedagogical and artistic management roles and has instructed several courses on musical development and pedagogy, focusing on study methodologies. Serving on competition juries for instrumentalists, he is currently part of the teaching staff at the Perosinho Music School and the Guilhermina Suggia Music School. Additionally, he holds a contracted teaching position at the Porto Conservatory of Music.

As a viola player, he works in the Porto Casa da Música Symphony Orchestra and serves on the Board of APVdA – Portuguese Viola Association.

His musical journey began with violin studies at the Academia de Música de Espinho and Escola Profissional de Música de Espinho, having benefited from contact with teachers such as José Camarinha, José Luís Duarte, Carlos Fontes, and Anna Kratochvilová. After 1992, he transitioned to the viola under the guidance of Professor Ryszard Woycicki, completing his studies at the Escola Superior de Música e das Artes do Espetáculo in Porto. In 1994, he was awarded the First Prize in the 8th edition of the RDP Young Musicians Award for the viola.

Beyond his musical pursuits, Luís Norberto Silva is passionate about engaging with people, listening to his students’ perspectives on the world, and enjoys cooking for both friends and strangers. He finds joy in hiking through the countryside and mountains, as well as in activities like chopping wood and creating wood libraries. Occasionally, his music might go out of tune, show rhythmic inaccuracies, lack expressiveness, and its sound isn’t as beautiful as I’d like, but he continues to embrace the artistic journey with dedication and enthusiasm.