Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

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Who is Marcus Hikren?

Marcus Hikren is an anagram of Erik Schurman and a virtual character designed by Reamon van der Horst. Erik Schurman is the composer of the piano pieces. He has a versatile career in the music industry as a successful producer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, piano tuner and sound engineer. It eventually takes until 2020 before Erik ventures into his first classical piano compositions.

Erik wants to show from his personal background that music can help keep the brain stimulated. Erik, who has only known he has Tourette’s since the age of 46, is a living example of how “other” brain paths can lead to a content own life path. What is true for Erik with Tourette’s is true for anyone with a brain that supposedly functions differently. People with a ‘different’ brain are not always seen as full-fledged by either themselves or others. There are billions of different brains with many different brain paths, leading to many different school and life paths. Erik is convinced that both individuals and society as a whole benefit from each unique brain being optimally utilized, recognized and acknowledged.

Somewhere along the way, Erik began to decide for himself what suits him best. Marcus Hikren is the perfect example: with his piano music he wants to stimulate his own and other people’s brains and make a valuable contribution to a society in which every brain matters. To this end, he enters into partnerships with primary schools and different foundations and art disciplines.

A characteristic of his piano music is that it never only just babbles. Just as in his everyday life, something always has to happen in his pieces.

Writing about Marcus Hikren in the media? Marcus understands that it’s nice not having to piece everything together yourself. That way you keep your brain paths free for the real thing. Download the No-brainer Presskit.

Where can I meet Marcus?

Marcus chooses to stay behind the scenes himself. This way he keeps his focus on composing piano music. Truly amazing brains bring his music live to life. You will never see Marcus in person on a stage. Online, however, he is more daring. The best way to approach him is via or Instagram. Marcus always responds.

What does music do to the brain?

For Marcus Hikren, music has certainly played a major role in the development of his brain. He knows from personal experience what music does to him. Marcus is not a neuroscientist. Everyone has their own expertise. Marcus applauds the work of many brain foundations all over the world, for instance de Hersenstichting (Dutch only), the American Brain Foundation, the Brain Foundation (Australia) and The Brain Charity (UK), where each unique brain can find help and more information about how their brain works.

Music plays an important role in keeping Marcus’ brain stimulated. He notices that just by listening to music, a lot is happening up there. By using binaural sound technology, he wants to add an extra dimension to that.

Marcus admires beautiful brains who are able to talk wonderfully about what music does to the brain. Watch: Dutch / English

How much challenge and stimuli does a brain need?

Marcus Hikren never sits still. That suits him. The amount of stimuli at which each unique brain feels comfortable is always different, but the truth is that every brain needs challenges. Marcus loves to discover new things and even needs that to feel good. Of course, that doesn’t have to be the case for you. You don’t have to make your own Tom Kha Kung or start composing piano music. But did you know that even doing something a bit different, a slight deviation from what you do on automatic pilot, is already good for your brain?

Read more: English / Dutch

How to Make Tom Kha Kung

There are delicious recipes with shrimp, lemongrass, laos, coconut milk, lime, mushrooms, broth… The Thai chef at Songkhla unfortunately refuses to reveal her secret ingredient. So honestly? Marcus won’t be attempting it himself anymore.

What is the importance of music in primary education?

Marcus Hikren believes that music education for elementary school consists of much more than just playing and listening to music. Education is the prime place to let children experience, through music or otherwise, what their own wonderful unique brains are not capable of and thus prepare them for the society in which they are growing up. The way our brains are labeled, shaped and challenged, by ourselves and by others, greatly influences our life and school paths. Marcus doesn’t need to convince education experts of that. Every teacher will always strive to bring out the best in each child. Marcus is working on a workshop in which, alongside various art forms, acceptance of one’s own and others’ brains is promoted in a playful manner.

Wanna know more?

What is Gilles de La Tourette?

Marcus Hikren understands quite well that someone with Tourette’s who frequently calls his mother-in-law a witch is more mediagenic than someone who, on the face of it, is not bothered by anything. But that is a one-sided view. Tourette’s is a neuropsychiatric disorder characterized by tics, and only a small percentage involves swearing. Tourette’s is often accompanied by additional features such as difficulty regulating attention or instead hyperfocus, sensitivity to stimuli, and coercive and compulsive thoughts. It often happens that people with Tourette’s are (wrongly) diagnosed with a related disorder, such as ADHD, OCD or autism. They do not receive a Tourette’s diagnosis, although they do have Tourette’s. Marcus commits to more recognition and acknowledgement of Gilles de la Tourette’s. Want to know more or get in touch with fellow sufferers? Go to:

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