Open Music School


The GSBTB – Open Music School is a free, volunteer-powered, knowledge-sharing community with a focus on the inclusion and empowerment of new migrants, marginalised people and those seeking a positive social network. We create spaces that are open to anyone, in which participants can develop real relationships that break isolation, cross cultures, encourage self-expression and inspire community engagement. We see the person for who they are: an individual with endless potential if given equal opportunities.

We believe in the power of music to create meaningful relationships that promote intercultural dialogue. We don’t believe that learning a musical instrument is only for those who can afford private tuition, or that performance opportunities should only exist for those who know the “right people”.

The Open Music School is more than just a music school or a “Refugees Welcome” sticker on the wall. It is a place where people meet new friends, build networks and discover their own creativity.

How does it work?

Music Tuition

We offer a variety of completely FREE weekly group classes run by talented volunteers, many of whom are musicians themselves. These groups focus on providing supportive and creative environments for people of any gender, nationality, ethnicity or migrational status to learn together. More advanced students are often encouraged to act as teachers’ aids and/or translators, thus creating a communal skill-sharing group free from hierarchy, where everyone has something to offer.

Guitar, Guitar workshops just for women*, Bass Guitar, Drums, Piano, Singing, the Open Music Lab, electronic music production… 

Open Music Platform & Band Support

We are a community of newcomer musicians. We connect musicians from all over the world to each other and make it our priority to expose them to mainstream industry opportunities such as concerts and festivals, as well as professional development opportunities. Each year we help many newcomer musicians from our network play festivals such as the Eastside Music Days Festival, Popraci Festival Rixdorf, Sommer für Alle Festival Neukölln, as well as countless smaller gigs across the city. We also regularly host events such as our New City Sounds concert series.

How do I become part of this project?

Become a teacher!

We are always looking for friendly, passionate and patient people who have a reasonably good understanding of their instrument to join our pool of teachers. You do NOT have to be an expert or have years of teaching experience. Contact Tom Young.

Sign up as a student!

EVERYONE is welcome to join our classes. We have people from so many nationalities and cultural backgrounds sharing and learning with us. Its really a beautiful thing. If you are shy, you don’t have to speak. If you are looking for new friends, you might find them here! Our classes are relaxed, social, and a safe place for all.

Donate to help us help others!
Financial donations are essential to help us to rent space and purchase instruments to help even more people! You can donate by clicking here.

Donate instruments!

The GSBTB – Open Music School could not have begun without generous donations of instruments from some awesome people. We are constantly growing and changing to meet the needs of our community and instrument donations help us to offer free tuition to more and more people.

NOTE: We are currently in need of old Laptop Computers for our Open Music Lab. Any condition considered.

Contact: Tom Young

Or send/drop off donations to:

Give Something Back To Berlin e.V.

Lenaustraße 4,

12047 Berlin

Read more about some of our music projects:

Legendary BBC DJ Mary Anne Hobbs visits GSBTB Open Music Lab

An article by GSBTB Open Music School student Renzo D’Andrea about connecting with others by learning to play music

GSBTB Open Music School hosts the second edition of its New City Sounds event on the eve of Fête de la Musique 2018

GSBTB Open Music School Manager Tom Young writing about its birth and two-year anniversary

Celebrating two years of the GSBTB Open Music School at New City Sounds #1

An interview with hip-hop and Afrobeats artist Afrikan Boy, who performed for East Side Music Days 2017

An interview with Ben and Rachel, who run the Open Music Lab

GSBTB Open Music School puts on its first Student Performance Night

GSBTB meets Fête de la Musique 2017

GSBTB Open Music School hosts the Yale Spizzwinks 



A huge thank you to our Partner and Supporter Anschutz Hilft e.V.


Thanks to Allianz Kulturstiftung for the support in 2016!


Thanks for the support Creaid!


Thanks for the support East Side Music Days!


Thanks to the support from Qatar Foundation International!