Paulien van Schaik

“What lies behind you and what lies ahead of you pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.” Quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Vision on teaching

For me, with the passing of time, teaching has evolved into sharing more and more. It is not purely the passing of knowledge, but merely an exchange of energy, knowledge, inspiration, enthusiasm, skills and passion. Of course there is expertise on a great deal of subjects which allow me to work on several necessary skills. Skills in terms of technique, phrasing, developing an analytic ear, timing, improvisation, lyric writing, arranging, making music together, telling a story through music. How to perform on a stage, expanding knowledge of repertoire, by getting you acquainted with many different styles of music and even more, different ways of using your voice; lyrically, melodically, free, expressive, experimental, small or grand and compelling. And all of that, without so much judgement, in a quest for your unique sound. With this ultimate goal, to bring forward your authentic musical personality. In our auditions, we are constantly looking for this personality. Maybe not so strong yet, maybe only shimmering through, but inevitably necessary for this profession. For me, the challenge of teaching is to find a balance between passing knowledge, skills and curiosity and to cherish the individuality of a student to have it blossom.


Jazz singer and songwriter Paulien van Schaik studied at the Conservatory of Utrecht and at Berklee College of music in Boston. She sang with numerous bands, at musical theatre shows, with a gospel choir, and performed as a singer songwriter. After her studies she started a collaboration with bass player Hein van de Geyn. Together they recorded 3 cd's, inviting trumpeter Bert Joris as a special guest on one of them. ('In Summer) They toured national and international jazz stages extensively. The duo, that mainly plays standard jazz repertoire, received an Edison Award (Dutch Grammy) for their first live recording. (‘Tenderly). Meanwhile Paulien’s focus is more and more on writing her own repertoire. With pianist Mike Boddé she did some try out concerts with mostly new repertoire. Plans for recording these songs are being made.

In 2007 Paulien was invited do start a vocal jazz class at the conservatory of Tilburg, where she is teaching ever since, building a solid and safe educational environment where singers can bloom and grow. Every year she tours different conservatories in Holland, when invited do be an external committee member for exams at the conservatories of Maastricht, Den Haag, Rotterdam, Utrecht and Amsterdam.

Ambience photo Fontys

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