Raised in Australia, songwriter and vocalist Sasha Rylei relocated to Brighton to begin her music career. Combining influences from Neo Soul, R&B, Jazz and Hip Hop, Sasha uses her upbringing and personal experiences to create a powerful sense of familiarity and comfort.
WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO COME TO BIMM INSTITUTE BRIGHTON TO STUDY THE TEACHING MA?
I moved to Brighton when I was 17, specifically for BIMM, and it was the best decision I ever made. I love this city – the atmosphere, the music scene and the sense of community that has come from meeting people through BIMM.
I was 16 when I started BIMM as I came straight from GCSEs. I did the (at the time) one-year Vocals diploma, then a degree in Vocals, so this teaching MA is my fifth year at BIMM. If you couldn’t tell, I have very fond feelings towards the city and this institute!
From a young age, when asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” I always said that I wanted to be a teacher, but my dream was to be a singer. Recently, I realised I could do both! During my time in Brighton, I have developed as a singer, pursuing my artist career, AND I’m now training to be a teacher where I can perfectly intertwine these two paths to become a singer teacher.
WHY DO YOU THINK THE TEACHING MA IS A GOOD COURSE TO CHOOSE?
All the lecturers are incredibly supportive and knowledgeable. There has been no point where I felt alone on this course. How the students feel about the course is so important to the lecturers because we’ve seen action taken from our feedback and being heard like that is a fantastic thing.
The content is always exciting, and with every week, I am learning so many new things and growing as a teacher. I’ve found it stimulating for my brain, and although it is intense at times, I believe it is well worth it. The course provides an outstanding balance between theory and practice. Of course, we do a lot of learning, but we’re also getting our hands dirty and trying out all this new knowledge we’ve gained and getting valuable teaching experience.
ARE THERE ANY PARTICULAR PARTS OF THE COURSE YOU’RE LOOKING FORWARD TO?
I’ve been most looking forward to the micro-teaches! This is where we pick any topic to teach a small group of our peers. It’s such a fun and great experience. We’ve done two, which I loved, and we’ve got a third one coming up where I’ll teach something from my Coaching and Mentoring module, which is probably my favourite part of the course so far.
It is precisely the area I want to be in, focusing on one-to-one teaching, and I find the content so fascinating. We all get into these deep discussions, and I just live for it.
HOW ARE YOU FINDING THINGS SO FAR?
As with everything, it has its ups and downs, so sometimes I lose a bit of motivation. Honestly though, this course has provided a great structure in my life. Whenever I’ve had these feelings, the lecturers have been there to get me excited about my work again and guide me where needed.
I am currently setting up my independent vocal coaching and mentoring business. I have had plenty of practice and am now ready to get going with my career. There is still a way to go, but I think it is excellent to set up life after being a student whilst still in it, instead of waiting until you graduate.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO SOMEONE THINKING OF STUDYING AN MA HERE AT BIMM INSTITUTE BRIGHTON?
Choosing to study at BIMM truly was a life-changing moment for me that has helped me grow into the person I am today. I love where I’m at now on the teaching MA course! I’ve gained so much experience, and I’m constantly learning about the ideas and theories behind education. The advice I would give is that it truly is all about what you put into it when taking on something new. It is hard work, but that feeling of accomplishment, growth and pride makes it all worth it!
This is a creative teaching MA, where you both learn and gain actual hands-on teaching experience ready for the real world. Not only that, but you get to live in an incredible city! If that all sounds like something you’re interested in, then I would say this is the course for you.