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Jorge Grossmann

Music’s power to bridge divides helped shape Professor Jorge Grossmann’s life during an adolescence spent among several cultures.  

Jorge Grossmann in his office with an image of the tapestry that inspired him.

Jorge Grossmann poses with an image of the Peruvian tapestry that inspired him to create a series of musical compositions for a small ensemble: “Siray I,” “Siray II," and “Siray III.” (Photo by Ashley Reedman)

After living in Peru for the first few years of his life, Professor Jorge Grossmann and his family relocated to Brazil due to Peru’s then-climate of escalating violence and political uncertainty.  

“[Brazil] was a completely different reality,” Jorge recalls. “Adapting to a new culture, a new language at a young age was very transformative—and of course, a new music, too.”  

It was Jorge’s passion for music that would sustain him during this time of adjustment and would later take him across Europe, the United States, and as far as Turkey to teach and collaborate with musicians from around the world.  “Sometimes language is a big barrier,” Jorge observes. “But when we talk about music, it’s very easy to connect. It doesn’t matter what culture or language—we speak the same language.” 

“I tell my students, ‘University comes with the idea of universality, which is including all points of view. You have to be open to new ideas and to be always open to new opinions and new ways of seeing the world.” 

As professor of music theory, history, and composition at IC, Jorge encourages students to embrace a global perspective on their paths as artists and individuals.  

“I tell my students, ‘University comes with the idea of universality, which is including all points of view,’” Jorge says. “You have to be open to new ideas and to be always open to new opinions and new ways of seeing the world.” 

Jorge also shares the value of exploring the concepts of “research” and “search.” Research, he says, is what happens externally, such as when a student explores a new musical technique. And search is an internal, thoughtful process that is conducted simultaneously.  

“Students acquire knowledge via their research, but they acquire their own identity and discover their own path by looking inward,” Jorge says.