Mentoring Musical Minds Logotype

    A holistic and far-sighted programme for fostering and development of musical talent

    Welcome! Mentoring is a unique, innovative approach to developing musical talent and teaching of music. A scientifically-based, trustful partnership between mentor and mentee fosters competence, professionalism and personality.

    Mentoring is aimed not only at individuals or small groups but also, for example as an enrichment programme, at institutions such as music schools or schools in general. The client benefits from systematic coaching, guidance and support: faster attainment of objectives, unlocking abilities and resources, fun while learning, practicing and playing, general well-being – and more room for creativity.

    Mentoring for
    Musical Talent

    Mentoring for musical talent

    Go beyond borders! Mentoring is most suitable for young, talented musician, who are searching for their musical identity, have doubts whether to carry on or want to unfold their abilities and maximise their development.

    Studies have shown that even gifted music students often lack methods and strategies. As a result, in spite of enormous effort and the best tutors, the desired outcome is not attained: this is known as «underachievement».

    I support and guide you on the base of the latest research and my long experience. We work in a confidential setting and work systematically towards your individual goal.

    Mentoring Musical Minds offers you methods, gives you the skills to progress autonomously and plan your career and supports you all the way. This is how we will work together:

    • exploring yourself (your musical identity, learning style, preferences …)
    • mapping and designing your development
    • empowering your strength and ability in self-management
    • relieving pressure and reducing anxiety and stress
    • assessing and reflecting upon your progress
    • extending your boundaries

    Please contact me for more detail or for an appointment in order to discuss your individual needs.

    Mentoring for

    Mentoring for Learners

    Practice makes perfect – or not? Not everybody gets there through hard study alone. Learners should create their own strategy to make learning become simpler and more productive, and make learning enjoyable.

    I will give you the knowledge you need and train you to reach your objectives alone. The systematic process is based on reflection and mutual feedback. Mentoring offers more than mere coaching. The following themes are covered:

    • Knowledge about learning
    • Learning skills
    • Effectiveness and productivity
    • Creative thinking and acting
    • Self-motivation

    Mentoring is all about your individual needs. If you would like to learn more, please contact me to arrange an appointment:

    Mentoring for

    Mentoring for teachers

    Why is it important to take the students where they stand and develop them as they are? Why should teaching be not a production line? And why are learners today quite different than before? How to teach them? Why is it so important to develop a tailor-made study plan for each learner?

    These are questions that music teachers often deal with. It is true that learners in the 21st century are making new demands and talented children need an enriched curriculum that includes components of creative thinking and self-management. The focus is on the process of creative thinking and self-management. I support and guide you to consider the following topics:

    • Correctly assess the musical potential of learners and their needs
    • Understand how "learning music" works
    • Develop your own "cool tool" as a teacher
    • Create an environment for creative learning
    • Give the learner a self-concept
    • Relieve stress and uncertainties

    Mentoring Musical Minds focuses on your individual needs. I advise individual teachers or groups depending on the need (private or organised by a school). Contact me for more information:

    Mentoring for

    Mentoring for Institutions

    Why do musically gifted students need special support? What kind of support do they need, and how should they be guided on their way? Why is professional planning necessary so that no learners are neglected and hidden talents are encouraged? How can the quality of teaching the gifted be assured? What mistakes occur frequently in promoting the gifted?

    What is successful promotion? Apart from financial support, additional courses and "Open Stages", at the core of successful teaching of the gifted is the selection procedure. It requires a fair and equitable selection process which considers future possibilities. I propose the following topics, which are important in promoting gifted musicians:

    • Professional promotion of gifted learners
    • A system for selection
    • Especially challenging study plans
    • Evaluation and management for sustainable quality
    • Designing flexible schooling over the entire education span

    If you have a request that is not mentioned here: Do not hesitate to contact me! I would be pleased to discuss your needs in a personal meeting.

    Mentoring for

    Mentoring for parents

    Your child is musically gifted, maybe even a musical genius - what do you have to do to develop these skills optimally? Is a good teacher sufficient, or does it need more?

    Some parents ask themselves these or similar questions. I am at your disposal to clarify the following:

    • How does musical learning work?
    • Can musical talent be cultivated?
    • At what age should music teaching begin - and with which instrument?
    • How to deal with gifted children?
    • Should children who are gifted, but show conspicuousness, refrain from sponsoring?
    • How to prevent underachievement?
    • What to do if a child is affected by underachievement?

    Or maybe you need support and guidance to work out some difficulties or problems. If your needs are not covered here, let’s have a conversation first in order to check the feasibility. Please contact


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    Do you know what riches lie within you? Do you know where you are now and where you want to be?

    Virtuosity is attained not just by intensive practice but by creativity, well-developed potential and qualitative handling of learning, practice and organisation.

    Identification means exploring and analysing your musical abilities, strengths, working style and intentions. Mentoring thoroughly analyses resources and needs. You’ll gain a much deeper understanding where you are and what is possible.

    I will support and guide you through the process. Your musical identity matters and you’ll have many A-Ha moments while exploring yourself.

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    Self-concept and Self-management

    Do you know yourself? Do you know how to make the very best of your abilities?

    How do you rate yourself? What are your goals? How do you get there? What can help you? And what obstacles are in your way?

    Self-concept and self-management are critical elements of the teaching of gifted pupils. All services offered by Mentoring Musical Minds include these aspects.

    Everything you achieve yourself motivates you and gives you confidence. "Build your own career by your own strength" is the motto for a modern learning and development programme in music.

    I will support and train you to apply your own abilities in the process of self-discovery and self-esteem. You will say goodbye to passive learning, work and life, and instead use mindfulness in everything you do.

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    Flow Experience

    Have you ever experienced the state of easiness and fluency like a stream?
    The Goal of Mentoring is the holistic development of talent, but also of self-confidence and wellbeing, so that clients enjoy the state of flow - calm, motivated and satisfied.

    I provide systematic training to help you reach the state of flow, so you can reduce stress and be more motivated, organise your life mindfully and so enjoy it better. Contact me.

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    Mentoring on- and off-line

    Are you concerned about sharing personal matters with your mentor?

    Mentoring is effective both Face-to-Face and supported by online communication. We can work in either way or flexibly switch one to the other.

    Mentoring is a confidential process. Nobody outside sees anything we discuss or work on – as a mentor I guarantee total confidentiality.

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    Of course you’re wondering how much Mentoring costs!

    Mentoring is a process, not a single meeting. The cost varies according to the size of the task. After the first meeting we can work out the best solution for you.

    Further Offers

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    Enrichment with and through Music

    Enrichment-Programm 1

    Enrichment with and through music

    Conventionally, music lessons are considered to learn the techniques from printed sheets and practice them. But that may not satisfy everybody. Enrichment programmes are designed to foster your fantasy, imagination and creativity, and allow you to discover your hidden abilities.

    For those wanting to learn more deeply beyond the usual lessons and to approach musicianship in a different way, which suits to your nature and desire, you extend the boundary.

    (1) for individual (2) for groups (ensembles, duets, trios … etc.)

    Tuitions for Cello/Piano/Chamber Music

    Tuitions for cello/piano/chamber music

    I have been teaching cello, piano and chamber music for more than 30 years. Based on my experience I develop innovative methods to suit any type of learner according to their ability, interests and objective, always «learning by doing».

    With my method beginners - with or without prior knowledge get started very easily. I help older children and advanced students achieve their aims by analysing the possibilities and planning the steps of learning together.
    Playing together with other learners promotes social skills, makes learning more reflective, creates an understanding of the different styles and offers the possibility of mutual learning. Jam sessions, which I regularly organise, offer the ideal setting.

    The characteristics of my tailor made tuition are:
    • easy entry
    • strengthen aural abilities
    • develop the relationship to the instrument
    • fun in playing
    • sustainable progress

    "Leadership"-Training for Young Musicians

    Enrichment-Programm 2

    "Leadership"-Training for young musicians

    Leadership is an action, not a position. The "leadership-Training for young musicians is not primarily about starting a music company or training for the head of a music school, but about the essence of leadership competence as a goal and method for the training.

    Through the open-ended tasks and the interaction between the participants, creative thinking, social skills, self-concept and self-management are encouraged. Leadership for young musicians is an educational innovation.

    Target group:

    • highly gifted young musicians
    • advanced young musicians
    • creative and/or gifted students

    Music for Your Events

    Music for your events

    DuoVariabile has been playing since 2000 for birthday parties, christenings, vernissages, weddings etc.

    We play different instrumental combinations as a duo. We offer a wide range of musical styles: the repertoire ranges from folk, jazz and film music to light classical music.

    A programme can be put together on request. Ask for a sample programme:

    About Me

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    Born in to Music

    Having grown up in a family of musicians in Taiwan, I began to play piano already at the age of four and later learned different instruments. I have been singing and playing in choir and orchestra since childhood.


    Bachelor of Western Music at the University of Wen-Hua (中國文化大學) in Taipei / Taiwan, Postgraduate studies (Künstlerische Reife in cello) at the Staatliche Musikhochschule Trossingen / Germany with Professor Gerhard Hamann. Master of gifted education and talent development with Professor Victor Müller at the Fachhochschule Nordwestschweiz. Numerous conferences and studies in music psychology and teaching the gifted.


    I have over 30 years’ experience giving music lessons and have taught students of all ages and from around the world in cello and piano. In addition, I worked for three years as a teaching assistant in Youth Music Camps in London / UK and Baden / Switzerland. I am interested in many things, I constantly generate new impulses from conferences and studies and develop my own methods to facilitate learning, to bring joy into practice and to help my pupils to become more motivated.


    A broad range of music styles and formations: I have played in various string quartets and been a member of various orchestras such as the Taipei Century Symphony Orchestra (台北世紀 交響樂團), the Chamber Orchestra Lake Constance and the Basel Sinfonietta. So I have a great deal of experience in interdisciplinary cooperation.


    Since 2011, I have been running the support programme for highly-gifted children (1st to 9th grade) at public schools in the cantons of TG, ZH, AG and BL. My responsibilities include school development programmes as well as counselling of teachers and parents.


    Since 2015 I offer mentoring for talented children, coaching, training and consulting for music teachers and support for young musicians and their parents.

    Theories and methods

    My theories are based on the creative learning concept of Joseph Renzulli, on international research results of psychology of gifted musicians, on positive psychology according to Daniela Blickhan, from the NLP practice, the counselling approach for gifted children by A. Wittmann and J. T. Webb as well as on my own extensive experience.


    Don't hesitate! Just contact me for appointments or further information!

    Mentoring Musical Minds
    Ya-Wan Chen
    Kernmattstrasse 24
    4102 Binningen

    Telephone +41 76 583 19 91