Published: Oct. 5, 2023 By

Evan Baltman's fluency in German is unique. Unlike most people who acquire Ling Disco Logolanguage skills through traditional means, Evan's journey into the world of German was anything but conventional. You see, Evan's family did not speak German, he never resided in Germany, and there was no practical reason for him to pick up the language. Instead, his path to fluency was paved by the thunderous rhythms of Rammstein, the iconic German heavy metal rock band. When Evan first encountered their music, it was as if a linguistic spark had ignited within him. He became utterly captivated by their songs and, in doing so, embarked on a remarkable linguistic odyssey.

Through countless hours of devoted listening, Evan began to absorb the nuances of German and gained a solid foundation in the language. With a passion for Rammstein's music as his driving force, Evan transformed his interest into true fluency. 

Inspired by the personal testimony that you can learn language through music, Evan founded LingDisco. This program restructures language learning by engaging users and compelling them to learn languages enjoyably. At the core of LingDisco lies a simple yet powerful concept: harnessing the magic of music to build a strong language foundation. The application allows users to follow along with a song through mini-lessons where users can quickly learn the foundation of a language while having fun. 

LingoDisco application open on a smartphone showing a picture of an artist with text below asking the user to match wordsCultural Connections: The Meeting of Evan and Pooria Poorsarvi

Before Evan could create LingDisco and share his new application of language learning, he went on to spend his undergraduate years at the University of Toronto. It was there that he crossed paths with his future co-founder, Pooria Poorsarvi Tehrani, during a statistics class. The connection between Evan and Pooria Poorsarvi was instantaneous, sparked by their shared passion for exploring foreign cultures. Pooria Poorsarvi brings a distinctive perspective to language learning, hailing from Iran and acquiring English in a manner reminiscent of Evan's German journey—through immersion in foreign cultures. Pooria Poorsarvi's gateway to English was paved by indulging in TV shows and movies, granting him a solid foundation in the language.

Evan and Pooria Poorsarvi’s philosophy revolves around the idea that language learning is most enduring when intertwined with the culture surrounding it. By learning a language through music and entertainment Evan and Pooria Poorsarvia agree that it unlocks the key to having a deeper understanding of a culture including the music, people, cuisine, locales, rich history, and more. They believe learning a language is akin to unlocking a treasure trove of new experiences and opportunities. 

Leeds School of Business: Where LingDisco Found Its Footing

After the pair graduated from the University of Toronto, Evan knew that he wanted to take his business knowledge to the next level so he could achieve the business goals he always set for himself. Evan and Pooria Poorsarvi were attempting to gain traction for LingDisco during the tail end of their undergraduate degree, but found major success the moment Evan stepped foot in the Leeds School of Business for his MBA program. Evan says that Leeds truly set the foundation for his company and that there “would be no LingDisco” without the resources he could use. One key resource Evan utilized was the Deming Center for Entrepreneurship Faculty Director Brad Werner’s New Venture Launch class. The experiential program teaches students to translate existing products, services, and opportunities into real, functioning ventures. Through New Venture Launch, Evan learned how to pitch LingDisco and was a finalist at the Boulder Theater in CU Boulder’s annual New Venture Challenge. There he placed third and walked away with $15,000 to continue LingDisco. Not only have Leeds and the Deming Center given these opportunities to Evan, Pooria Poorsarvi, and LingDisco, but they also provide support when it comes to mentorship. Evan says

“My mentors Brad Werner, Betsy Klein, Karen Crofton, and Erick Mueller have invested so much time and resources into my success. I want to make all of them proud because they have really been there from the beginning. A year ago I had no idea what was in store for me and they have seen me the whole way through.” 

Evan Baltman pitching LingDisco at New Venture ChallengeWhere Will You Explore?

Traveling to a foreign country is one of the most eye-opening experiences. Experiencing new food, different ideologies, and ways of life gives incredible perspective. Language is the key to unlocking a deeper understanding of the values that culture shares. To learn more about updates coming from LingDisco, make sure to sign up for their newsletter or blog! You can now also sign up for early access to the LingDisco website, where you can explore songs, and learn languages. If you are a CU Boulder student or language learner that likes to drink coffee, LingDisco is also offering $10 starbucks gift-cards to participants of their focus groups. Sign up here! Where will you go to explore next?

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